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ISRO to assist development projects in the Northeast through Space technology

Chairing a high level meeting with senior officers of the Ministry of DoNER and ISRO scientists, the Minister said that six out of the eight States of Northeast have already sent their specific proposals for execution by ISRO, while the remaining two States of Sikkim and Assam will send their proposals soon.

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New Delhi: Union Minister of State for Development of North Eastern Region (DoNER) Dr Jitendra Singh on Wednesday said Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) will assist development projects in the Northeast through ‘Space Technology’ and will contribute by offering optimum utilization of satellite imaging and other Space Technology applications for better accomplishment of infrastructural projects in all the eight States of the North Eastern Region.

Chairing a high level meeting with senior officers of the Ministry of DoNER and ISRO scientists, the Minister said that six out of the eight States of Northeast have already sent their specific proposals for execution by ISRO, while the remaining two States of Sikkim and Assam will send their proposals soon.

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Dr Singh informed that ISRO is already monitoring and Geo-tagging 67 projects at 221 sites in all the 8 States funded by MDoNER/NEC. He said, this is first of its kind in the whole country, where there is an institutionalised involvement of ISRO in mapping and sharing of data for developmental projects and can become a model for other States too.

Noting that ISRO is no longer confined mainly to the launching of satellites, but it has been constantly enlarging its role in development activities, thus contributing to Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s mission of “Transforming India” in last seven years.

North Eastern Space Applications Centre (NESAC) at Shillong has received a number of proposals from North Eastern states. It would be discussing the feasibility and desirability of all such projects, one by one with each of the States in the next fortnight. Once identified, all such projects are likely to be funded jointly by respective States and NESAC.

He also said that during the visit of Union Home Minister Amit Shah to Shillong and meeting with the North Eastern Space Applications Centre (NESAC) society in January this year, some major projects to be taken up had been flagged.

“Some of the important projects on which work is under progress are like the mapping of forest gap areas, expansion of land area for horticulture development, Identification and rejuvenation of wetlands and diversion of floodwater, assessment of Bamboo resources for livelihood needs”, Dr Singh said.

The Minister said that the Home Minister is likely to visit the centre again in July to review the progress of the projects. He said that despite the crippling effects of the COVID, much headway was made in execution of these projects.

Dr Singh also mentioned that in North Eastern Region, space technology is now being used in diverse sectors including agriculture, railways, roads and bridges, medical management/telemedicine, procurement of timely Utilization Certificates, disaster forecast and management, weather/rain/flood forecast.

Senior officials from ISRO informed the Minister that seven projects from Arunachal Pradesh in areas like dam construction and flood mitigation, three model villages, horticulture and border fencing at zero level are nearing completion. Similar projects from other states are also on way to achieve target.

The North Eastern Space Applications Centre (NESAC) is an autonomous organisation under Department of Space at Shillong and provides dedicated service to the North Eastern Region (NER) of India comprising of eight states viz. Arunachal Pradesh, Assam, Manipur, Meghalaya, Mizoram, Nagaland, Sikkim, and Tripura.

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