India’s Union Minister, Jitendra Singh, recently unveiled the timeline for India’s ambitious space project during a media interaction. As part of the plan, India aims to launch an unmanned mission followed by a mission involving a female robot. These missions will precede the highly anticipated Gaganyaan human space-flight program.
Singh emphasized that the first mission will be completely unmanned, prioritizing safety. It will also be designed to land in water, ensuring the security of the mission. Following the unmanned mission, the second mission will see the deployment of a female robot. This robotic mission serves as a stepping stone towards the ultimate goal of the Gaganyaan program.
Originally scheduled for the end of 2023, the Gaganyaan mission’s timeline has been slightly delayed due to the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. Singh acknowledged the setback but assured that the project is still on track and will be launched either by the end of 2023 or in 2024. He expressed gratitude towards the Prime Minister for allocating funding for the mission, emphasizing that Gaganyaan will be a milestone for India as it showcases indigenous expertise, funding, and an Indian-origin astronaut.
Singh provided insights into the rigorous training process that the astronauts have undergone. Some of the training took place at a Russian institute, with the two-stage training now successfully completed. This training is crucial in preparing the astronauts for the challenges and demands of space exploration.
Singh also highlighted the global anticipation surrounding India’s progress in space exploration. The successful execution of the Gaganyaan mission will mark a historic moment for India as it sends its astronauts to the final frontier.
Beyond space exploration, Singh discussed India’s plans for lithium extraction in Jammu and Kashmir’s Reasi district. The extraction of lithium, a key component in batteries, holds significant importance for India’s focus on clean energy as a cost-effective source. The exploration and evaluation of lithium reserves will determine the subsequent steps in utilizing this valuable resource.
Furthermore, Singh mentioned India’s involvement in the green hydrogen sector. He referenced the Prime Minister’s vision of a green hydrogen mission, emphasizing that India could potentially become an exporter of green hydrogen within the next 25 years. This highlights India’s commitment to renewable energy and its ambition to play a prominent role in the global energy landscape.
In addition to the space and energy sectors, Singh underscored India’s rising status in the world under the leadership of Prime Minister Modi. He pointed out that India’s economy has surpassed that of Britain and highlighted India’s ranking as the third-largest startup ecosystem. The fact that the G20 summit is being hosted by India further signifies the country’s growing international stature.
Regarding Pakistan, Singh stated that the actions taken by Pakistan concerning Jammu and Kashmir are not new but have been ongoing since 1947. He attributed Pakistan’s behavior to its inability to accept that Jammu and Kashmir is an integral part of India.
As India’s space agency gears up for these significant milestones, the nation and the world eagerly await the realization of the Gaganyaan mission and the profound impact it will have on India’s space exploration endeavors.