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The Indian Antarctic Bill 2022 tabled in Lok Sabha

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The Indian Antarctic Bill 2022 tabled in Lok Sabha

Recently the Central Government has introduced the Indian Antarctica Bill, 2022 in the Lok Sabha.

The Central Government has introduced the Indian Antarctic Bill, 2022. Its purpose is to protect the environment of Antarctica and its related ecosystems and to make the Antarctic Treaty effective.

In 1959, 12 countries signed the Antarctic Treaty. The treaty focuses on preventing the militarization of the continent of Antarctica and establishing it as a center of peaceful activities.

India is a signatory to the Antarctic Treaty since 1983.

Salient Features of the Indian Antarctic Bill

It has been proposed to restrict Indian expeditions to Antarctica or certain activities in Antarctica without a permit.

The Indian Antarctic Program includes:

  • Dakshin Gangotri
  • Maitri
  • Bharti
  • The activities of the Indian Antarctic Program will be facilitated, including the management of Antarctic tourism and the sustainable development of fisheries.
  • An Antarctica Fund will be created. It will be used for the welfare of Antarctica research work and protection of Antarctica’s environment.
  • A committee will be set up on Antarctica Governance and Environment Protection. This committee will monitor, implement and ensure compliance with relevant international laws, emission standards and safety regulations.
  • The Convention on the Conservation of Antarctic Marine Resources, 1982 and the Protocol on Environment Protection to the Antarctic Treaty, 1998 will be implemented.

Need of Antarctica Bill:

  • This is necessary given the exploitation of marine life resources and human presence in Antarctica.
  • There is a need to regulate tourism and fishing in Antarctica. Antarctica is an uninhabited land and hence a domestic law is needed.

Source – The Hindu

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