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Space Activities Bill

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New Delhi: Currently a ‘Space Activities Bill’ is being processed, which is under pre-legislative consultations. India is a State Party to UN Treaties on Outer Space activities. The obligations under these treaties, such as international responsibility for national activities in outer space and liability for damages caused by its space activities and space objects are to be implemented through national/domestic legislations. The current Bill will enable the formulation of necessary Rules under the Space Activities Act, to deal with damages under the liability provisions and mode of securing financial guarantee for compensating the damages.

Consequent to enactment of Space Activities Act, space activities of non–governmental sector in India would be authorized through a licence issued by the Government on certain terms and conditions. It would address the liability issues arising from their space activities, in a suitable/ rational manner, at par with international practices.

Indigenous GPS

India’s own regional navigation satellite system named as “Navigation with Indian Constellation (NavIC)” is established by ISRO and is functional from April 2018 onwards.

ISRO has completed all the necessary preparations with regard to establishment of Space Segment (currently Eight IRNSS satellites are in orbit) and Ground Segment (spread across India). The Seven satellites in the system are providing Positioning, Navigation and Timing (PNT) services and one satellite (IRNSS-1A) is providing messaging services.

The potential of this indigenous system is being demonstrated in various application sectors viz. vehicle tracking system, mobiles, timing & power synchronization, fisheries, surveying etc. For example, all commercial vehicles registered from 1st April 2019 onwards are mandated to have vehicle trackers, which are also NavIC-enabled. More than 30 companies are manufacturing Automotive Research Association of India (ARAI) or International Centre for Automotive Technology (ICAT) approved NavIC-enabled vehicle trackers in India. Through the provision of these services, the dependence on the American-owned GPS could be obviated.

This information was provided by the Union Minister of State (Independent Charge) Development of North-Eastern Region (DoNER), MoS PMO, Personnel, Public Grievances & Pensions, Atomic Energy and Space, Dr Jitendra Singh in written reply to a question in Lok Sabha today.

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