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Sunday, 05 January 2020 - Imphal Times

CLP urges government for discussion on guidelines of ILP at state assembly session

‘Indigenous people’ and the ‘Permanent Resident’ in the ILP guidelines not clearly defined – O. Ibobi

IT News

Imphal, Jan 5

Congress Legislature Party (CLP) leader Okram Ibobi Singh today urged the government for a threat bare discussion over the formulation of guidelines for Inner Line Permit introduced in the state under the Bengal Eastern Frontier Regulations.

“The ‘Indigenous people’ and the ‘Permanent Resident’ mentioned in the guideline as per the gazette notification of the Government of Manipur published on December 31, are not clearly defined”, the former Chief Minister and leader of the opposition Okram Ibobi Singh said while talking to a group of reporters at his official quarter today morning.

Congress MLAs Gaikhangam, Govindas Konthoujam, K. Ranjit, DD Thaisii, Khumukcham Joykishan and K. Meghachandra were also present during the press conference.

Okram Ibobi Singh said that the appropriate forum for discussion of such issue for law makers is the State Assembly and the special session scheduled tomorrow should give time to discuss the issue of guidelines for ILP for implementing it effectively, as the ILP is a long pending demand for the people of the state.

“The agenda for tomorrow’s session is for endorsing the 126 Amendment of the article 334 for extension of reservations of the ST, SC and other marginal communities for another period of 10 years and that the speaker of the house can take the opportunity of the sitting to discuss over the guidelines of the ILP”, Ibobi said urging the government for listing of discussing the guidelines for implementation of ILP in Manipur.

“No provisions of the Manipur Peoples’ Protection Bill which the state Assembly had passed as per the desire of the people of the state, that is still remain pending for getting assent has been included in the guideline”, Ibobi said while adding that there are loopholes to the guidelines for effective implementation of the ILP which is the desire of the people.

The CLP leader even cited example of neighbouring state Nagaland saying that after the state felt that there are loopholes to the ILP in their state they even constituted a High Power Committee for examining it. The recommendation by the committee after thorough examination had submitted a report. Even the state of Arunachal Pradesh also felt the same as the present ILP is not effective enough to check the influx of outsiders.    

Ibobi also urged the government to take the matter with extreme seriousness, an appeal for a threadbare debate in the state assembly. The guidelines have no provision of how long a student studying in the state can stay and exempting all Army personnel, Para-military and those working in central services and their family members from ILP is gross mistake as the guidelines. If it is about those posted in the state then it is okay but exempting the ILP to all central government employees will make ILP meaningless, Ibobi said.

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RBI’s new curbs on urban cooperative banks

IT News
Mumbai, Jan 5

As a sequel to Rs 6300 crore fraud in the Punjab and Maharashtra Cooperative (PMC) Bank, having branches in 6 states, RBI has decided to make it compulsory for Primary (Urban) Co-operative Banks (UCBs) having total assets of Rs.500 crore (as of end March 2019), to report credit information, including classification of an account as Special Mention Account (SMA), on all borrowers having aggregate exposures of Rs.5 crore.
The coop banks will be required to submit information to Central Repository of Information on Large Credits (CRILC) maintained by the RBI. Aggregate exposure shall include all fund-based and non-fund based exposure, including investment exposure on the borrower. RBI notification dated 27 December 2019 stated.
The new curbs include: the creation of a board of management (in addition to a board of directors), is aimed at addressing the issues arising out of dual control. Urban cooperative banks with deposits above Rs.100 crore must constitute a board of management (BOM).This requirement will be a mandatory for opening new branches. Since UCBs are accepting public deposits, it is imperative that a separate mechanism be put in place to protect the interests of depositors,” said the RBI in its notification.
The BOM will comprise expert banking professionals. It will also exercise oversight on banking-related functions of the UCBs, assist the Board of Directors (BOD) on formulation of policies and any other related matter, specifically delegated to it by the board for proper functioning of the bank.
The BOM will be constituted by the BOD within a period of one year from the date of the circular, and have a minimum of five members and may have as many as 12 members. The chairman of the BOM may be elected by the members from among themselves, or appointed by the BOD, it added. UCBs will have to make suitable amendments to their by-laws, with the approval of the general body and registrar of cooperative societies to provide for the constitution of BOM, in addition to the BOD.
The CEO of a UCB may be appointed by the board, and he should be a person meeting the ‘fit and proper’ criteria. UCBs having deposits of Rs.100 crore and more will obtain prior approval of the RBI for the appointment of a CEO. The CEO will be a non-voting member, the RBI said.
The RBI has also issued a comprehensive cyber security framework for UCBs, based on a graded approach and the banks have been categorised into four levels based on their digital depth and interconnectedness to the payment systems landscape.
The decision assumes significance against the backdrop of a scam at Punjab and Maharashtra Cooperative Bank, which has affected 915,000 depositors. 21,049 bank accounts were opened by bogus names to conceal 44 loan accounts and the bank’s software was also tampered to conceal these loan accounts.
Besides, the PMC bank allegedly favoured “ Housing Development and Infrastructure Ltd” (HDIL) and allowed it to operate password protected ‘masked accounts’. Statutory inspection of PMC by the RBI revealed large group exposure of about Rs.6,226.01 crore to HDIL and its group companies. Of the total exposure to the HDIL group, only Rs.439.58 crore was disclosed to the RBI while Rs.5,786.43 crore remained undisclosed.  
In the meanwhile the Economic Offences Wing (EOW) of Mumbai Police has arrested 12 people, including 5 top bank officials, in connection with the PMC Bank fraud.

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Absconded murderer with Rs. 5000/- reward on his head arrested

IT News

Imphal, Jan 5

A special team of Imphal West police station led by Additional Sp (Ops) Amarjit Singh Lamabam and CDO OC Inspector Achouba arrested a wanted murderer who have been absconding for about 15 years from Bashikhong area in Imphal East yesterday evening . Home department of the Government of Manipur had announced a sum of Rs. 50,000/- to anyone who can give information or whereabouts of the murderer identified as Ningombam Ibomcha Singh (56yrs) of Kongba Irong Bashikhong .

The person has been absconding in connection with the murder of one R.K. Sanajaoba in 2004.

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Rumours of Air India baseless: AI India chief Ashwani Lohani

IT News
Mumbai, Jan 5

Although the Air India is reeling under an enormous debt burden, the airline will not be closed down and it would continue to fly and expand and there should be no cause for concern whatsoever to travellers, corporates or agents, the Air India Chairman and Managing Director Ashwani Lohani tweeted on Saturday.
“The Air India, the national carrier is still the biggest airline of India,” Ashwani said and dispelled rumours that India’s flag carrier would be closed down.
Lohani’s statement assumes significance since Civil Aviation Minister Hardeep Singh Puri had clarified on December 31 that the national carrier, is incurring a loss of Rs 20-26 crore daily and it will keep on running till it is privatised. Air India’s net loss increased to Rs 8,556.35 crore in 2018-19, compared to net loss of Rs 5,348.18 crore reported for 2017-18. While Air India’s net loss in 2018-19 was around Rs 8,556 crore, its current total debt is around Rs 80,000 crore.
In 2018, the government had proposed to offload 76 per cent equity share capital of the national carrier as well as transfer the management control to private players. However, the offer failed to attract any bidder when the deadline for initial bids closed on May 31, 2018. Therefore, the Centre re-started the disinvestment process.
The Centre plans to divest its entire stake in Air India this time so as to make it attractive for private entities. At a meeting with some 13 Air India unions in Delhi on Thursday, Puri said that the government was trying to address the concerns of the employees regarding issues such as job protection post privatisation.
In the meanwhile, the airline has managed to sell 32 of the 111 properties put on the block. The debt-laden airline is making a renewed bid to raise funds by auctioning real estate assets, including some it could not sell in previous auctions by lowering the reserve price of some of the properties. Air India has lowered the reserve price of some of these properties, especially those in Tier 1 cities, to attract buyers, a senior Air India official said, requesting anonymity.
The properties on the block include flats at Asian Games Village Complex in New Delhi, flats in Kolkata’s Golf Green area, residential land in Mumbai’s Bandra, Khar and Prabhadevi areas, a holiday home in Lonavala, flats at Chennai’s Besant Nagar, apart from flats in Bengaluru and Mangaluru. The reserve price of these units range from Rs.15 lakh to about Rs.8 crore.
Air India’s plan to monetize its real estate is part of a turn around plan (TAP), which was approved by the government in 2012.

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A Critique of the Manipur ILP Guidelines 2019

By - Dr. Malem Ningthouja
Alt. ICC, International League of People’s Struggle

On 31st December, 2019 the Government of Manipur issued a Manipur Inner Line Permit Guidelines, 2019. The Guidelines was issued to comply with a promise of Chief Minister N. Biren to implement an Inner Line Permit System in Manipur before the onset of the year 2020. The Chief Minister could announce the promise as he was possibly confident by a notification of the Ministry of Home Affairs, dated 11th December, 2019, that notified Adoption of Laws (Amendment) Order, 2019 that extended Bengal Eastern Frontier Regulation, 1873 to Manipur.
A chunk of population in Manipur celebrated the occasion. They celebrated because the President of India, on 12th December, 2019, gave an assent to Citizenship (Amendment) Act, 2019. According to a provision of the Act, there is an exemption of the Amendment into those regions where Bengal Eastern Frontier Regulation 1873 have been enforced. The decision of the Government of India to enforce such an exemption was conditioned by a consistent and intense agitation in Manipur and other parts of Northeast opposing CAA. The agitation was motivated by a widespread apprehension of a demographic invasion by a vast chunk of population supposedly selected and encouraged by the Government of India. It is, therefore, quite natural that many in Manipur would organize celebration when Manipur was exempted from CCA in consequence of the extension of Bengal Eastern Frontier Regulation.
In Manipur, popular movement to protect indigenous rights has been consistent for many years. It demanded enforcement of an Inner Line Permit System or enactment of a law similar to it. When the Government of India, in due recognition of popular sentiments, notified a list of the regions that would be exempted from CCA 2019, Bengal Eastern Frontier Regulation, 1873 was extended to Manipur. Subsequently, Manipur Inner Line Permit Guideline, 2019 was published. However, it remains to be answered if the Guidelines will certainly protect the indigenous people of Manipur. Will it adequately address the specific popular demands to protect and promote indigenous people? The demands are: (1) to have a regulatory mechanism to stop unrestraint inflow of outsiders, (2) to prevent outsiders from owning land, (3) to prevent outsiders from owning buildings and immovable properties, (4) to prevent outsiders from becoming permanent citizenship and enjoying voting rights, (5) to create a base year so that anyone entering into Manipur after the base year may be identified and deported, and so on.
A serious reading of Manipur Inner Line Permit Guidelines 2019 reveals that there are many issues that contradict the demand to protect and promote indigenous people. The issues are being pointed out as follows.
(1) Definition Exemption:It is mandatory to have a proper definition in order to determine what constitutes indigenous people and permanent residents in Manipur. In order to identify indigenous and permanent residents, it is essential to have a base year. This question arises as the Guidelines exempts indigenous people and permanent residents from ILP, though it misses out definitions of the terms. Who are the permanent residents? Can it mean anyone who may obtain a certificate issued by government for that purpose? A base year is essential to detect and identity either indigenous people or permanent residents. Will the base year be 1951 as demanded by many, or will it be 1971, or which year? Due to the silence on definitions and a base year, the Guidelines has added to the confusion about who should be required to possess an ILP card to enter and live in Manipur. It also creates a condition where a person who enter Manipur by obtaining an ILP card can identify himself with a permanent resident status through different means, and, subsequently escapes from the necessity of obtaining an ILP card.
(2) Ownership: Protection and promotion of indigenous rights require that indigenous people exercise ownership over their homeland, land, buildings, immovable properties, natural resources, and markets. The Guidelines does not include a provision that prevents outsiders from owning the above items. Although the principle Act of 1873 mentions prevention of outsiders from enjoying ownership over land, the Guidelines fails to mention this issue. Such a silence appears to be deliberate and meant to authorize outsiders to own the above items.
There are probabilities that those who obtain Special Category Permit—rich, politically influential, powerful—and who have accumulative interest to exploit the economy of Manipur will enjoy absolute control and monopoly of Manipur. There is a need to insert a clause,in the spirit of the principle of Bengal Eastern Frontier Regulation, 1873 to serve the interest of the indigenous people of Manipur. It may be inserted as follows; “It shall not be lawful for any non-indigenous person or companies or firms or enterprises or banks or finance institutions owned by outsiders, to acquire any interest in land, buildings or immovable properties, the product of land beyond, and voting rights within the “inner line” of Manipur without the sanction of the Government of Manipur, who in turn can sanction such a permission only after fulfilling due process of law which shall be preceded by the free prior informed consent of the indigenous people.”
(3) Voting rights: Even when there is a law that prevents outsiders from owning land, buildings, immovable properties, natural resources, and market; it is difficult to prevent the pressure of outsiders if theyplay dominant role in making political decision and administration. To prevent from political domination by outsiders, there has to be restriction on granting of voting rights. When outsiders are granted voting rights, in the first phase they are being used as vote bank in local electoral politics. It subsequently strengthened their permanent rooting and political influence. In the second phase, when the demography of outsiders increased tremendously, it interplayed with their political and economic power in exerting further monopoly. When they could use voting rights to exert influence in politics and administration, the effectiveness of ILP system will become a natural death. It is due to the enjoyment of voting rights that, today, in many pockets of Manipur, outsiders are playing pro-active role in electoral politics, expanding residential settlements, and playing interventions in political decision making and administration. It is necessary for us to realize that the aggravating situation has been the result of the ploy of a powerful section of the self-centered and opportunist clique who has no vision for a glorious future of indigenous people. One must avoid from repeating the same mistake.
(4) Exemption Illegal immigrants: Clause 16 of ILP Guidelines stipulates, “these regulations and Guidelines shall not apply to foreigners who shall be regulated and governed by… the Passport (Entry into India) Rules, 1950 and subsequent amendments.” This matter cannot be taken lightly.Because, according to the Ministry of Home Affairs notifications, dated 7th September, 2015, and 18th July 2016, entry without any restriction has been offered to persons belonging to minority communities in Afghanistan, Bangladesh and Pakistan, namely, Hindus, Sikhs, Buddhists, Jains, Parsis and Christians who were compelled to seek shelter in India due to religious persecution or fear of religious persecution and entered into India on or before the 31stDecember, 2014. For us, it will to be difficult to verify any one would enter into Manipur on the basis of the above claims. Those verified immigrants can enter without an ILP card. If they will settle in Manipur, in the long run they will pose serious threats to the economy, politics, culture and demography of the indigenous people.
(5) Exemption Non-Manipuri: Clause 8 of ILP Guidelines stipulates a list of “category of persons exempted from Inner Line Permit.” A question can be raised in this regard. Will it be a big burden if ILP card is either obtained by or issued to this category of outsiders, to express their respect for the unique history, identity, and sentiment of the indigenous people of Manipur? According to the Government of Manipur, Home Department, No. 1 /9 (2)/ 2019-H (ILP), dated 13th December, 2019, BJP General Secretary Mr. Ram Madhav obtained an inner line permit for entering Manipur. He twitted it and claimed that he was the first person to willingly obtain an ILP card. Is it really problematic if such a ‘good gesture’ is shown by all starting from the Governor of Manipur onwards to the lower officials and the rest of outsiders? Such a gesture should be encouraged by the governments of Manipur and India.
Clause 8 contains certain terms that do not have corresponding definitions. When sub-clause (i) to (vi) exempt “family members,” it requires a proper definition. How will government respond to a big chunk of population if they enter Manipur on the claim of “family members?” The term “officers” mentioned in sub-clause (iii) requires a proper definition. A definition has to be mentioned, to be based either on the basis of pay grade or office post designation. Sub-clause (vii) stipulates, “all executive members of the recognized National and State Political Parties.” It is irrational and must be deleted. If BJP General Secretary had willingly entered Manipur by obtaining an ILP card,why others cannot follow the same procedure? Sub-clause (viii) mentions “educational institutions.” This term is vague and can become manipulative. An “educational institution” should be affiliated to either Board of Secondary Education Manipur or Council of Higher Secondary Education Manipur or Manipur University or any other government recognized university that has a campus in Manipur. Otherwise there will be lack of accountability. Fake educational institutes may come into existence with the sole objectives of promoting migration. Such fake institutions may issue identity cardsto over-aged pretenders, as there is no age bar for someone to be a student. The validity of such ID card may surpass the validity of Special Category Permit. Therefore, “educational institution” needs to be properly defined.
(6) Authority: On the question of issuing ILP card, the Guidelines accords government with discretionary power. There are some problems in this. First, when Clause 5 (ii), stipulates, “any other agency authorized by State Government,” the term “any other agency” needs a proper definition. If it has not been properly defined, it is likely to be misinterpreted and manipulated in the interest of those who may misuse power to outsource or privatize the authority to the hands of private firms or companies or a handpicked team. Second, on the issue of card to Special Category ILP, Clause 9 (iv) mentions, “any other person as decided by the State Government.” Here, it leaves the door open to manipulation by powerful,who may issue Special Category Permit to anyone on any pretext to suit their personal interests. It also creates a condition whereby Special Category Permit may be granted indiscriminately without any restraint. The sub-clause, if at all required, may be redrafted as, “Any other person as decided by the State Government on the basis of cabinet decision based on prior open information and invitation of opinions and consents of the people.” Third, Clause 22 is quite irrelevant or unnecessary as it can outplay all the clauses of the Guidelines. It writes, “The State Government has inherent power to relax any of the above guidelines at its discretion.” This clause renders ILP Guidelines as a whole meaningless. This should be deleted. Or, it may be redrafted as, “Nothing in this Guideline can be relaxed until and unless a new Regulation drafted after obtaining the free prior informed consent of the indigenous people of Manipur have suppressed it under the due process of law.”
(7) Penalty: Clause 20 mentions penalty. There are technical lapses and oversight in it. First, it exempts permanent residents from the penalty of not possessing an ILP card. It, however,fails to mention indigenous people of Manipur and those who are exempted from ILP system. This error must must be rectified. Second, it is mentioned that those non-exempted people who enter Manipur without an ILP card or those who overstay the period of validity are “liable for prosecution as provided under the Bengal Eastern Frontier Regulation, 1873.” This penalty leaves out many relevancies in the contemporary context of Manipur. Because, according to BEFR, 1873, those who are being prosecuted guilty are to be fined or jailed or both. There is no provision of deportation of guilty outsiders. Forfeiting of illegally possessed land, building, property, and infrastructures are not clearly mentioned. There is no provision of rejection of permit to a guilty outsider, for a certain period of time (days or months or years or forever). Manipur ILP Guidelines does not mention all these. Third, there is no penalty for those indigenous or permanent resident landlords who give shelter or rented buildings, rooms, etc. to those outsiders who violate ILP Guidelines. There should be a penalty against sellingof land, buildings, immovable infrastructure, etc. to outsiders. All these shortcomings need to be rectified. All these must be included in the Guideline.
(8) Sponsors: There are certain issues on sponsors. This is related to Clauses 9, 10, and 12, and Application Forms A, B, and D.First, a definition of sponsor is missing in the Guidelines. The term sponsor mentioned in Clause 10 and Application forms 9, 10, and 12 requires a proper definition. Second, Clauses 9 and 12 do not mention the exact term sponsor, but the corresponding Application Forms A and D require to append the name and signature of a corresponding sponsor. This inconsistency needs to be rectified. Third, Clause 10 (b) for Regular Inner Line Permit demands, “the application shall be sponsored by any permanent resident of the State of Manipur.” The reason that indigenous people or institutions (such as educational, sports, and cultural) are not allowed sponsoring regular visitors (such as teachers, professionals, fellows, emeritus, families, and friends) is a mystery. It seems government has a framework of mind that gives importance primarily confined to commercial bourgeoisie, bureaucrats, politicians, extractive firms, project dealers, military and paramilitary personnel, and their families, relatives, and friends only. Fourth, Application Forms A and D are lacking in space or provisions to verify authenticity and collection of necessary information pertaining to a sponsor. It is indeed funny to find that a sponsor has to merely mention its name (or department name in case of form D) and append a signature only. It gives enough chances of duplication or pretention or manipulation and escape from authentic verification. It will amount to lack of transparency and accountability. This error needs to be rectified.
(9) Contraventions: First, on the question of principle—given the above discussed loopholes— ILP Guidelines 2019 contravenes the ideals of peace and good governance. Because, peace in our context is possible when development and tranquility are achieved by defending indigenous people from the pressures of outsiders, and when there is a good governance that gives efforts to achieve it. It is possible when economy, polity, society, culture and tradition, and identity of indigenous people are safeguarded from demographic aggression by outsiders. To achieve this goal, people have carried out a movement lasting for more than a decade, demanding ILP system. When an ILP Guidelines is enforced in name-shake only and does not guarantee protection of indigenous rights; it cannot be called either peace or good governance.
Second, ILP Guidelinescontravenes the Merger Agreement signed between the Government of India and king Bodhachandra. It was as on the terms of the Agreement that the Government of India took over Manipur. It is the responsibility of the Government of India and the dependent Government of Manipur to respect the spirit and terms of the Agreement. Article VIII of the Agreement stipulates, “They [the Government of India] also undertake to preserve various laws, customs and conventions prevailing in the State pertaining to the social, economic and religious life of the people.” The conditions of social and economic life cannot be separated from polity.Similarly, religious life cannot exist independently without population and the value system and culture connected with the spiritual life of the population. All these are interconnected. All these can be protected and promoted only when indigenous people of Manipur are being defended from the pressure of outsiders.
Third, ILP Guidelines overrides national and indigenous rights of the people of Manipur. It contravenes the spirit and norms of international statutes such as; (a) International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (1966), (b) International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (1966), (c) International Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination (1969), and (d) the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples 2007.
Fourth, ILP Guidelines contravenes repeated promises made by BJP National and State Unit leaders to respect and protect the interest of the indigenous people of Manipur. In addition to it, the Guidelines also contravenes the spirt and demand of the consistent popular movement to defend indigenous rights.
It is the rights and duty of the indigenous people of Manipur to protect and promote themselves. It is the utmost duty of the governments of Manipur and India to respect these rights and duty. If government policies contravene these rights and duty; it can only be that the indigenous people of Manipur are deemed to be completely subjugated and overruled to fulfill a hidden agenda. If local efforts to defend indigenous rights are in conflict with the Constitution of India (such as Fundamental Rights or VII Schedule), it can be solved by inserting an exceptional provision or by amending the Constitution accordingly. It cannot be that the Agreement of 1949 was signed (or people of Manipur remained silent when India took over them) to promote domination by outsiders and for a complete destruction. The Government of Manipur, being a dependent unit of the Government of India may be powerless to pursue many local issues with firmness and boldness. However, on those issues that the Government of Manipur is not in a position to take a decision vboldly, it must entrust the matter to the people, so that popular movement can raise the matter to a higher level. On the contrary, if the Government of Manipur indulges in the policy of escapism, lies, and diversion only to divert the interest and demand of the people; its exaggerated rhetoric becomes oxymoron and shows the symptom of an animated or spineless leadership that is remote controlled by an alien force indifferent to the interests and rights of the indigenous people of Manipur.For now, it is time to rectify mistakes and insert changes in the Guidelines.

ISRO to send space missions in solar system

IT News
Mumbai Jan.5

 Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO), which is planning to send three Indian astronauts to space by 2022, as part of India’s ambitious “Gaganyaan” project, will also send manned human missions in solar system in near future, ISRO engineer and scientist Dr. V. R. Lalithambika said here.
While delivering a lecture at “Techfest 2020”, organised by the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT), Bombay, at its Powai Complex in North East Mumbai, Dr. Lalithambika said that now the ISRO which has already gone through the process of sending spacecrafts to moon and mars, will try to send manned space missions also in the solar system.
Dr. Lalithambika, who is heading “Gaganyan mission to send humans to space, said that the space research got momentum after two world wars due to the competition between different nations. The human ingenuity makes one to explore newer and newer avenues. To enter solar system, the speed of the rocket should be 1/5 th of the speed of the light. The light reaches earth within 8 minutes.
To send space crafts or satellites, now the chemical rockets are used, but in future this technology will become outdated and plasma rockets will have to be used. Since the plasma rockets have tremendous speed, it will be possible to reach to planet Jupiter within a week/ month from the moon. With chemical rockets, the estimated duration is 4 years to reach Jupiter from the moon. In future the speed of the chemical rockets will be reduced to large extent and they will become obsolete.That is the reason, the use of plasma rockets is the need of the hour.
To propel humans through space with a 100-billion-Watt laser is one of the ISRO’s projects in the pipeline she said and added that ISRO is serving the nation in various fields including communication, navigation, space science etc and every single person of India is somehow linked with its services. Over 75 per cent of the population of country lives in remote areas and it is advisable to space technology to provide services in various speeds.
The amount of space junk around earth has hit a critical point. Hundreds of thousands of man-made objects are zipping around our planet—from dead satellites to errant nuts and bolts, putting our working satellites at risk. There are at least 5 lakh satellites in the earth orbit. Of these nearly 4000 satellites are obsolete. As such to send satellites in the space is a big problem. To design satellite for the space mission is also a challenge before researchers.
A lot of research goes in finding out how the satellites could be sent into the space using less energy. Similarly the astronauts travelling by space crafts face many health hazards like muscular pain, kidney disorder, eye ailments, brain fatigue, change in thinking system etc.
Dr. Lalithambika later inspected the project “Innovations and major challenges in Oil refinery”, presented by IIT Assistant Professor Pramod Kothmire, as part of the 23rd edition of “Techfest 2020”. The project has been appreciated by Reliance India Ltd, ONGC, BARC and a few other oil refinery industries.
Former Prime Minister of Bhutan and an environmental activist, Dasho Tshering Tobgay speaking on “towards an environmental friendly nation” said that today Bhutan is “carbon  neutral” due to strict adherence to pollution control norms and efforts to maintain an ecological balance. That is the reason “climate change” has not affected Bhutan which continues to be peaceful. Besides “we have protected our culture from undue influence of social media”. As such our country is peaceful”.
 IIT Bombay is headed for the moon
In the meanwhile IIT Bombay has collaborated with NASA funded “Colorado Space Grant Consortium University of Colorado” at Boulder(USA) for the Lunar Mission. Projet Manager Anmol Sikka and Assistant Project Manager Sanskriti Bhansali said that the IIT Lunar Mission is part of IIT Bombay Student Satellite Project. “We are part of this endeavour and the provisional plan envisages 500 Luna Satellites designed and developed by students from all over the world to fly to the moon. Spacecraft made by IIT-B will be one of them. The size of the spacecraft is 5cm x 5cm with a thickness of 1-2mm. The launch is slated for 2022,which will mark the 50th anniversary of “Apollo 17”, the last manned mission to the moon.
By now over 60,000 people have attended the three-day long Techfest. The visitors are having first hand experience of Air taxis, air drones, ‘Robowars’, The Time Machine(innovation by a Japanese firm), Prosthetics for sports and many other eye catching projects.

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