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India’s first human space mission “Gaganyaan” won't be affected by COVID pandemic: Jitendra Singh
New Delhi, June 29, 2020
Union Minister of State for Atomic Energy and Space Jitendra Singh said here today that the launch of India’s first human space mission “Gaganyaan” will not be affected by the COVID pandemic and preparations were carrying on in the right direction.
Briefing about the important achievements of Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) and the Department of Space over the last year and some of the important missions planned for the future, the Minister said that even though because of the COVID-19 pandemic, the training of four Indian astronauts in Russia had to be halted, yet the opinion of Chairman ISRO and the scientific team is that there had been kept a “cushion” both in the training programme and launch deadline.
The training of astronauts has now been resumed and the launch is scheduled to take place as planned, before the 75th anniversary of India’s independence in 2022, he said.
Speaking on the Cabinet decision to encourage private participation in ISRO activities, Jitendra Singh said a regulatory body called “Indian National Space Promotion & Authorization Centre (IN-SPACe)” will be established. This will help provide a level playing field to private players and encourage their participation, he said.
Besides enhancing the capacity and resources of Indian space missions increased participation of private players will also discourage the brain drain of talented space scientists and experts who were otherwise moving out of the country for better avenues.
About Chandrayaan-3 Lunar mission, Jitendra Singh said, as of today, it was planned for launch next year. This mission will involve a lander, rover and a propulsion system to carry the modules to move but it would not have orbiter as the previous orbiter was fully operational, he added.