India’s capacity to secure its usage of outer space has played a significant part in its current progress and wealth. With the arrival of the second space era, commercial enterprises such as SpaceX are taking the lead. However, as stated in the Outer Space Treaty (OST), current international law holds nation-states accountable for the conduct and consequences of their private space firms, citizens, and officials. Countries and coalitions of states should develop strategic papers outlining the overall direction of their space programmes. A project of this nature will improve inter-organizational collaboration and assist enhance investor trust.
The need for a comprehensive space strategy
- Space has sweeping uses and dependencies in practically every facet of civilian and military life. Space is developing as a possible fourth pillar of India’s defence strategy.
- With the United States, Russia, and China already pursuing space power status, India will need to equip itself effectively to address rising security concerns.
- Space tourism is one of the avenues that Indian enterprises may be interested in pursuing. Of course, the government would have to develop a policy framework to allow private engagement in this industry.
- India already has tremendous space capability. However, its potential to deny an opponent access to space is, predictably, modest. In terms of satellites, India has just a few military spacecraft operational, compared to over 40 civilian satellites. Only in 2013 did we launch our first specialised military satellite.
- In the future, outer space will be a valuable economic area.
- The expansion of China’s space capabilities to dominate outer space has created a new sense of urgency for a firm strategy.
- The space industry is becoming more competitive. New Zealand is pushing itself as a launch site for private rockets. Singapore is positioning itself as a space entrepreneurial hub because to its legal framework, skilled labour availability, and equatorial location.
- The Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) produced a proposal of a new Spacecom Policy 2020 in 2020, which was accepted by the union government and allowed commercial entities to participate.
- India has established the Defence Space Agency (DSA), which is sponsored by the Defence Space Research Organization (DSRO), with the mission of developing weapons to “degrade, disrupt, destroy, or confuse an adversary’s space capacity.” DSA is trying to acquire technology that will allow it to assess threats and maximise the efficacy of Indian operations in space, land, sea, and air domains.
- Balanced Approach to Space Initiatives: India must avoid being too focused on certain outer space projects. Instead, a balanced strategy is required to cover in-orbit, Earth-to-space, and space-to-Earth applications. The statement in the NATO policy to space being relevant “across the spectrum of conflict” is a proper articulation of the concept.
- Space Situational Awareness (SSA) is the awareness of any space object’s position and activity, as well as the influence they can have. Transparent SSA should also be a priority for India’s strategic publication, as it enhances India’s defence and deterrent capabilities throughout the spectrum. With publicly available SSA data, New Delhi should demonstrate its will to hold its opponents responsible.
- Another relevant area in which India should boost research is defence against near-Earth objects. In the near term, India should take the initiative to collaborate with international entities, and in the long term, it should plan for a planetary defence programme.
- India need a new space strategy that intends to utilise space as a growth sector for the economy, attract private investment, and generate employment, while also encouraging scientific discoveries and assisting in the leapfrogging of economic issues.
- There is a need to establish an impartial regulator who would regulate both ISRO and future space businesses on an equal footing.
- India’s approach should signal that it would not only be a participant, but also a vital stakeholder – it is critical to express India’s concerns about ensuring that all nations have free access to space.
How to structure
- Give an intro about space technology/space wars
- Discuss the need, advantages for a comprehensive space strategy and what it should encompass
- Briefly mention the powers who are already in the race- draw a map
- Suggest way forward and Conclude