Russia and India can conclude an agreement on the exchange of experience and interaction in preparation for the launch of the first Indian manned space mission, Indian media reported on Sunday.
Indian agency PTI reported, citing official sources, that the parties may sign the contract during the upcoming official visit of Vladimir Putin to New Delhi early next month.
In late August, head of the Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO) Kailasavadivoo Sivan said that members of the first Indian national space crew would be trained in one of the foreign states, with Germany, the United States and Russia being named among the possible options.
Indian Foreign Minister Sushma Swaraj said in September that New Delhi was looking forward to Russian President Vladimir Putin’s visit on October 4. The visit of the Russian leader to India is expected to take place within the framework of the annual bilateral summit.
India has been developing its own space program since 1947, immediately after the country gained independence. The work is conducted under the guidance of the government department of space research. The coordination of activities of various organizations and firms within the national space program, as well as the creation of rocket and space technology is entrusted to the ISRO.
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Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced that the country planned to launch the first national manned mission into space before 2022. The spacecraft has already received the name Gaganyaan, which means “Skycraft.”