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10 launches, Gaganyaan, Chandrayaan 'disturbed' due to lockdown: ISRO chief

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New Delhi, June 24: The Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) chief K Sivan on Wednesday said that ten space missions being prepared for launch this year have been “disturbed” due to the coronavirus-induced lockdown besides delay in the human space and Moon missions.

ISRO will make an assessment of the impact of the lockdown on its missions, he said. The ISRO chief added that the space agency had planned 10 launches.

ISRO chief K Sivan

“Because of this (pandemic), everything got disturbed. We have to make an assessment after the COVID-19 issue is resolved,” Sivan told PTI.

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    “Gaganyaan will be impacted because of the lockdown… all industries have not yet started functioning,” Sivan said, adding that in the last few months, the work on the Mission had stopped.

    ISRO is dependent on the private sector for manufacturing equipment for its launch. The Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) which provide equipment to the ISRO are among the worst-hit due to the lockdown, coupled with migration of labourers. “All our missions (including Chandrayaan-3) have been impacted,” he said.

    “We have to assess the impact of the lockdown on Gaganyaan,” Sivan added. After the hard landing of Chandrayaan-2 last year, ISRO had planned to launch Chandrayaan-3, which was scheduled to be launched later this year.

    Gaganyaan, the human space mission, envisages to send three Indians to space by 2022. The four test pilots selected for this mission are currently undergoing training in Russia, but even that was impacted due to coronavirus lockdown in the country.

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