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Members of India’s first space crew may be trained in Russia

August 30, 9:37 UTC+3 NEW DELHI

On August 15, Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi stated that the country will independently send an Indian crew to space by 2022

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© Alexandr Scherbak/TASS

NEW DELHI, August 30. /TASS/. The members of the first Indian space crew may undergo training in a foreign state, Russia being one of the options, Kailasavadivoo Sivan, head of the Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO), told journalists.

ISRO will need to take the help of a foreign country for advanced training of the crew, he said. "We have not decided which country we will choose for training. Russia, Germany and USA have the facilities," Sivan said, according to the PTI news agency.

He added that there are consultations with the Indian Air Force on the crew selection. After the crew is selected, two to three years will be needed to train it, the ISRO head noted.

Sivan reported earlier that the organization is discussing issues linked to the first Indian space flight with Rakesh Sharma, the first and only Indian citizen to travel in space. He flew aboard Soyuz T-11 in 1984.

In his speech on Independence Day on August 15, Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi stated that the country will independently send an Indian crew to space by 2022, when India will be celebrating its 75th independence anniversary. ISRO’s representatives said then that a crew of three people is expected to be sent to a near-earth orbit where it will work for five to seven days. The name of the spacecraft and the whole program was already announced - it is Gaganyaan (Sanskrit for "sky craft"). According to local media, India’s crew may include both men and women.

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