Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) breached another barrier in innovation in technology when it launched a PSLV carrying 104 satellites, setting a world record by a big margin. ISRO has been paving the way for space technology and slowly the world is sitting up and noticing its giant efforts in the space sector. ISRO has been a pioneer in technological innovation where it has had developed software in cheaper and affordable ways. The space organisation had launched the Mars Orbiter Mission in 2013, for example, at a small cost of $78 million which is one-tenth of what NASA spends to develop its own mission to Mars. ISRO also successfully launched the navigation satellites to aid the development of navigation system, IRNSS which would make our country only the fifth country in the word who have an indigenously developed navigation system. ISRO, apart from its own achievement, also showcases the power and importance of the public sector in India. DRDO is another example who have been doing great work in the defence sector with its missile launches, but it has a long way to go. Similar efforts should be made by other Public Sector Undertakings (PSUs) to replicate ISRO’s success.
DRDO in itself, is a fine instance of technological prowess, as the defence research organisation has managed to successfully test numerous missiles. Last year, it also tested a supersonic interceptor missile capable of destroying enemy projectiles. Brahmos, Ballistic Missile defence system, Samyukta Electronic Warfare System, Unmanned Aerial Vehicles, High-Performance Computing- Dhruva-3, Integrated Guided Missile Development Program, Ultracheap, pocket explosive detection kits, Excalibur assault rifle and Arjun Battle Tank are just some of the technological advancements which DRDO has been able to achieve.
Similarly, there have been other efforts backed by the Indian government towards various innovations in technology, including Aadhaar, National Stock Exchange (NSE), National Payments Corporation of India (NPCI), or National Securities Depository Limited. Interestingly, National Dairy Organisation in Karnal was the first to create an IVF buffalo and clone a buffalo, which got recognised the world over for cheap technology. While, such efforts, demonstrate that many of the PSU’s are on a good path to replicate the humongous achievements which ISRO has been managing, there is a lot that needs to be done.
There is a dire need to free public sector companies from bureaucratic control and rise above what they are generally perceived as- slothful and slow. The more they incorporate technology in their own work, the more innovations they are capable of. Additionally, the government needs to spend more on the PSU’s if it wants them to attain their true potential. ISRO is a fine example which showcases that despite the professionalism and revenues of the private sector, the public sector is also capable of great things based on path-breaking innovations.