Honourable Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi interacted with space industries, startups and academia today (On December 14, 2020) to encourage their participation in space activities. The Union Cabinet led by the Honourable Prime Minister took the historic decision in June 2020 to open up the Space sector and enable the participation of Indian private sector as a co-traveller. As per the Cabinet approval, the approach towards space activities in the country will shift from a ‘supply-based model’ to a ‘demand-based model’. With the creation of Indian National Space Promotion and Authorization Centre (IN-SPACe), the reforms will provide a level playing field for private companies and start-ups. Subsequently, several industries have submitted proposals with the newly created IN-SPACe under Department of Space. The proposals pertain to a vast range of activities including satellite constellation, small satellite launch vehicles, ground station, geospatial services, propulsion systems and application products.
Today’s interaction meeting was represented by eight space industry participants in interactive mode with Honourable PM comprising of Shri Sunil Bharti Mittal from Bharti Enterprises, Shri Jayant Patil from Larsen & Toubro Ltd, Shri Srinath Ravichandran from Agnikul Cosmos Pvt Ltd, Shri Pawan Kumar Chandana from Skyroot Aerospace Ltd, Colonel H S Shankar from Alpha Design Technologies Pvt. Ltd., Shri Rakesh Verma from MapmyIndia, Shri Awais Ahmed from PIXXEL India and Smt Srimathy Kesan from Space Kidz India. Seven other industry representatives participated as observers in the session.
The meeting started with an overview by Dr K. Sivan, Secretary DOS/Chairman ISRO elaborating about the reforms, initiated by Department of Space. He gave an outline of the various kinds of requests received from industry for obtaining permission from IN-SPACe and support from Department of Space. He informed that more than 25 industries have already approached DOS for getting permission or support for undertaking their space activities. He added that actions have been taken to address the requirements and applications are being processed on a fast track mode. This was followed by feedback on reforms by industries briefing about the outline of their proposed space activities and expressing their views on space reforms during the session. This interaction further demonstrated the efficacy of space as an area of investment, innovation, inspiration, interconnection and integration.
Honourable Prime Minister, in his address, underlined the need to strengthen the professional talent pool of the country to empower the field of space. He appreciated the Department of Space for the initiatives in accelerating the space reform activities by supporting and handholding the industries. This can take the country to greater heights with faster speed. He assured that the government will do its best in making industry-friendly policies to support the innovative ventures. He expressed hope and confidence that this initiative will create high technology jobs for our youth from IITs, NITs and other engineering colleges. This will also ensure the long-term development of the country and society and change the lives of poor people.