Militarisation & Weaponisation of Space: Where does India stand?​

Dr. Aruna Kammila
Assistant Professor, Damodaram Sanjivayya National Law University, India

Volume III, Issue VI, 2020

The beginning of 21st century has witnessed major shift in the power not only in terms of the political power but economic power. The Asian countries such as India and China are desperately trying to consolidate power in the new world order. China and India are emerging as superpowers owing to the boost in their GDPs and are thus, consolidating military power through economic power. The projection and manifestation of the military might in the light of the technological advancement in not restricted to land and sea and the super powers such as the United States, China and Russia are consistently trying to dominate the outer space by weaponising and militarising the outer space. In the backdrop of changing balance of political power in the new world order, the paper intends to study how far the States have progressed in the weaponisation and militarisation of space.

The paper argues that militarisation and weaponisation is the direct result of the desire of the State to consolidate power. The rivalry between the US and China has made India rethink its security calculus; more particularly in the wake of China conducting Anti Satellite (ASAT) Test whereas simultaneously China is trying to encroach upon the Indian territories. However, the unchecked and unregulated weaponisation and militarisation of space pose serious threat not only to the international peace as suspicion and mistrust amongst the States is increasing exponentially but also the critical civilian infrastructure such as communication, navigation, broadcasting which is dependent upon satellites in the outer space is also threatened. In the light of these developments, the paper argues that there is imminent need of regulations to prevent further weaponisation and militarisation of space.

Keywords: India, Space Laws, Militarisation, Weaponisation