The International Legal and Policy Conference on “The Future of Transport: Opportunities and Challenges in Aviation and Space Industry” was inaugurated by Mr. G.B.S. Raju, Chairman, Airports, GMR Group on February 2, 2020 at NALSAR University of Law, Hyderabad. The Conference was organized by the Centre for Aerospace and Defence Laws (CADL) at NALSAR, headed by Prof. V. Balakista Reddy, in association with GMR Group, University of Mississippi, USA and Sarin & Co. While inaugurating the Conference Mr. Raju highlighted the passenger traffic and the need for aviation infrastructure in India. Further, he highlighted the expansion of Hyderabad Airport to accommodate future growth in passenger and cargo, by integrating technology and processes like e-boarding, ATRS, Self-Bag Drop, Facial Recognition, etc. Hon’ble Justice A. Muhamed Mustaque, Sitting Judge, Kerala High Court shed light on the importance of space technology in the contemporary world and emphasized the need for domestic space regulation in India.

Prof. Faizan Mustafa, Vice-Chancellor, NALSAR while welcoming the guests highlighted the teaching and research activities of Centre for Aerospace and Defence Laws (CADL) in the last 20 years. Dr.P.C.K Ravindran, ICAO Consultant and Aviation Advisor to Government of Sharjah, UAE highlighted the future aviation growth in India compared to other countries around the globe. Padma Shree Dr. Y.S. Ranjan, Distinguished Professor (Former), ISRO shared his experiences about his association with Dr. A.P.J. Abdul Kalam in light of a legal and policy essay competition in the field of air and space law conducted by Mr. Sagar Singamsetty, an alumnus of NALSAR. Capt. S.N. Reddy, Secretary and CEO, Telangana State Aviation Academy highlighted various initiatives taken by the Government of Telangana to promote the State as a hub for aerospace and defence sectors. Mr. T. Krishna Prasad, IPS, DGP and Chairman Road Safety Authority, Government of Telangana emphasized on the growing scope and development of Urban Mobility and multimodal transport, with safety being highest priority.

On this occasion, the Hon’ble Guests released various publications of the Centre for Aerospace and Defence Laws (CADL) including Indian Journal of Air and Space Law, Teaching and Research Activities of Air and Space Law at NALSAR: A Journey of Two Decades and the Conference Souvenir. The winners of the 1st A.P.J. Abdul Kalam Air and Space Law Legal and Policy Essay Competition were announced – Winner is Ms. Keertana Venkatesh, 1st runner-up is Ms. Ishita Das and 2nd runner-up is Ms. Vani Koushik.

Over the last two days, the Conference hosted various industry experts from Ministry of External Affairs (MEA), Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA), Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO), Bureau Civil Aviation Security (BCAS), Boeing, GMR, GVK, Ola, Bounce, PAL-V (Flying Cars), International Law Firm HFW, Indian Law firms specialized in aviation and space industry, students and faculties from various law schools across the globe. The speakers deliberated legal and policy issues the industry should consider for the future in the areas of space, airlines, airports, urban mobility and drones. The main highlight of the Conference was the session on “Women in Transport” which discussed the need for diversity, inclusiveness and more participation of women in transport industry.