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Why was Duttada hopeful that he would discover a new comet soon?

Answer

Duttada was hopeful that he would discover a new comet soon because he knew that the professionals with their pre-assigned programmes would be looking at faints stars and hazy galaxies. They might miss such an insignificant things as a comet, which they would not be expecting to see. Amateurs had often discovered new comets, which professionals had missed.