Isro data from remote sensing satellites helped raise crop output: minister

He said satellite imaging is now being used for supervising Indian borders and to check foreign infiltration.
The Indian Space Research Organisation (Isro)'s technology is no longer mainly about launching satellites. The space agency has been constantly enlarging its role in development activities, contributing to Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s mission of "Transforming India", said Union Minister of State (Independent Charge), Development of Atomic Energy and Space, Jitendra Singh.

He said today Isro technology is being used to carry out production forecasts for at least eight major crops such as wheat, Kharif and rabi rice, mustard, jute, cotton, sugarcane, rabi sorghum and rabi pulses. 

Speaking about the comparative improvement in the crop condition and increased productivity in the agriculture sector in July 2019 vis-a-vis July 2020, Singh said due to the extensive use of data from remote sensing satellites, the Normalised Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI), which is a proven indicator for vegetable/crop health or vigour, clearly shows better crop conditions during this July. 

In the Railway sector, applications of space technology were recently realised in guarding unmanned Railway crossings and detecting obstructive objects on the tracks to avoid train accidents. 

He said satellite imaging is now being used for supervising Indian borders and to check foreign infiltration.
"Isro and the Department of Space have already overtaken the space missions of several other countries and the images procured by the likes of Mars Orbiter Mission (MOM) are now being used even by the premier space centres for infrastructural development and public welfare projects. India has also taken a lead in the application of space technology and its example is now being followed by other countries," said the Union Minister.

Singh said four years back, on the intervention of the Prime Minister, an extensive brain-storming exercise was held in the union capital wherein representatives from different ministries and departments were engaged in an intense interaction with Isro scientists and the Department of Space. The objective was to work out how best space technology could be used as a modern tool for supplementing, improving and expediting infrastructural development, and for the implementation of various welfare schemes. 

Following this, space technology is now being used in diverse sectors such as agriculture, railways, roads and bridges, medical management/telemedicine, procurement of timely Utilisation Certificates, disaster forecast and management, weather/rain/flood forecast, the Minister said.

Dear Reader,

Business Standard has always strived hard to provide up-to-date information and commentary on developments that are of interest to you and have wider political and economic implications for the country and the world. Your encouragement and constant feedback on how to improve our offering have only made our resolve and commitment to these ideals stronger. Even during these difficult times arising out of Covid-19, we continue to remain committed to keeping you informed and updated with credible news, authoritative views and incisive commentary on topical issues of relevance.

We, however, have a request.

As we battle the economic impact of the pandemic, we need your support even more, so that we can continue to offer you more quality content. Our subscription model has seen an encouraging response from many of you, who have subscribed to our online content. More subscription to our online content can only help us achieve the goals of offering you even better and more relevant content. We believe in free, fair and credible journalism. Your support through more subscriptions can help us practise the journalism to which we are committed.

Support quality journalism and subscribe to Business Standard.

Digital Editor

Business Standard is now on Telegram.
For insightful reports and views on business, markets, politics and other issues, subscribe to our official Telegram channel