Govt plans to commerialise space activities | Current Affairs, Current Affairs 2019

Govt plans to commerialise space activities

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The Centre is likely to introduce a Bill to commercialise space activities in the budget session next year.

The government, responding to a question raised by Poonam Mahajan, said the Space Activities Bill 2017 aims to “facilitate the overall growth of space activities in India with higher order participation of public, non-governmental and private sector stakeholders.”

It will help the Centre establish a regulatory mechanism through an appropriate body to authorise and license space activities.

“The provision on liability for damages caused by space activities of licensee provides for a risk sharing mechanism, by which the Central Government may determine the quantum of liability to be borne by the licensee,” the response said.

The draft Bill received 52 responses, the government said, adding that 15 of these were from the general public. Stakeholders from the Indian aerospace industry and related start-ups sent four responses while law firms and lawyers sent another four. The government also received responses from space law experts and scholars (nine), satcom companies (four), industry fora (seven) and scientists (nine).

Most of the responses sought clarifications, while some had suggestions on provisions such as scope of space activities, regulatory mechanism, licensing and authorisation procedures, sharing liability burden with a limit on damage costs and penal provisions.

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