Lok Sabha passes Indian Antarctic Bill 2022; House to meet again

The Lok Sabha, on Friday, passed ‘The Indian Antarctic Bill, 2022’ amid a storm of opposition protests.

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The Lok Sabha passed the Indian Antarctic Bill, 2022 which seeks to have India’s own national measures for protecting the Antarctic environment and dependent and associate ecosystem.

The Indian Antarctica Bill, 2022 was brought up for discussion as soon as the House reassembled on Friday at 2 pm following the second break of the day. Earth Sciences Minister Jitendra Singh had moved it for consideration. Soon after passing the bill, the Lok Sabha got adjourned for the day to meet again on Monday at 2 pm.

Lok Sabha passes Indian Antarctic Bill

On April 1, 2022, the Indian Antarctic Bill, 2022, was introduced in the Lok Sabha. The bill aims to extend the application of domestic laws to research stations set up by India in the Antarctic region. Presently, India has two active research stations in the Antarctic named, Maitri and Bharti. Here the scientists are involved in research and studies.

The Bill proposes to prohibit Indian expeditions to travel to Antarctica without a permit. Or the written consent of another signatory to the Antarctic Treaty. It also proposes to establish an inspection process with a government-appointed officer and penalties for breaking certain legal requirements.

Additionally, it aims to create a fund to support Antarctic research projects and safeguard the region’s environment.

Parliament Monsoon Session Updates

Ruckus in both Houses continues for the fifth day in a row. Both Houses have been witnessing protests by the opposition members since the start of the Monsoon Session on Monday. Opposition benches are demanding a discussion on GST rate hike, Agnipath scheme, misuse of agencies and other issues.

On Day 4 of the Monsoon session on Thursday. Moreover, the Lok Sabha was anticipated to consider and enact the Indian Antarctic Bill, 2022. However, the administration requested that the bill’s passage be postponed due to empty Opposition benches.