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Approach:

  1. Define Geospatial technology.
  2. Briefly mention the current state of geospatial technology in India.
  3. Mention the steps taken by government.
  4. Mention the perceived impact of deregulation.
  5. Conclusion.

Geospatial Technology is a term used to describe a range of modern tools like the Geographic Information System (GIS), Remote Sensing (RS) and Global Positioning System (GPS). These tools capture spatial information about objects and phenomena. The location data may be Static or Dynamic. The technology may be used to create intelligent maps to help identify spatial patterns among large volumes of data. The technology facilitates decision making based on the priority of scarce resources.

State of India’s geospatial sector :  According to India Geospatial Artha Report 2021, the Indian geospatial economy is currently valued at Rs 38,972 crore, employing approximately 4.7 lakh people. There has been an increase in the use of geo-spatial data in daily life. These include, et.al,  food delivery apps, cab hailing apps and many weather apps. This sector is publicly dominated by government-run agencies like the Survey of India (SOI).

Governmental steps to leverage this sector:

  • Guidelines for Geospatial Data, 2021: The guidelines were released by the Ministry of Science and Technology. The guidelines deregulated existing protocol and liberalized the sector. The guidelines eliminated the requirement of permissions as well as scrutiny, even for security concerns for Indian Companies.
  • Companies now can self-attest, conforming to government guidelines without actually being monitored by a government agency.
  • Geospatial Energy Map of India: It has been developed by NITI Aayog in collaboration with ISRO. It aims to provide a comprehensive view of energy production and distribution in the country. It will be useful in planning and making investment decisions & also aid in disaster management.
  • Union Budget 2022-23: Government supports the use of Kisan drones for land assessment, digitization of land records and spraying insecticides and nutrients.
  • Yuktdhara Portal: The Ministry of Rural Development has launched a new geospatial planning portal named ‘Yuktdhara’, which will serve as a repository of assets (geotags) under the various National Rural Development Programmes, such as MGNREGA. It will integrate a wide variety of thematic layers, multi-temporal high-resolution earth observation data with the analytic tools.

Impact of deregulation:  Experts are projecting the geospatial market to reach around 1 lakh-crore by 2029 with 13% CAGR. The geospatial sector is seeing new interest from more investors. Another notable activity was the launching of a city mapping programme by Genesys International in India.

Geospatial will be a crucial technology driving growth ambitions of the country – providing employment and also aiding the new-age ecosystem by providing location intelligence at our fingertips. More and more sectors such as agriculture, environment protection, power, water, transportation, health etc. are desiring the technology for truly realizing their potential.

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