BANGALORE: Even as the Indian space program has managed indigenous a majority of all the components that go into satellites and launch vehicles, the Indian Space Research Organisation’s (ISRO) dependence of foreign players for electronics has irked a department-related Parliamentary standing committee.

The Committee on Science & Technology, Environment, Forests and Climate Change, in a report tabled in Parliament on Friday has noted: “Efforts to indigenise electronic components in our space program must be intensified, if needed in Public Private Partnership (PPP) mode. An import dependence of more than 80% is unacceptably high.”

ISRO chairman K Sivan, while conceding this, told TOI: “If you look at it in terms of value, we’ve indigenised nearly 90%, and only about 9% is imported. These are just carbon carbon fibre and electronics. We’ve started fabricating in our own lab,” Sivan said.

Elaborating further, he said: “The good thing is that our semiconductor lab (SDL) in Chandigarh has started producing devices and some key aspects. Slowly, our own components will be ready. For example, in the last PSLV missile the computer chip/processor (Vikram) was fabricated in SDL. Also, some of the detectors guarding HySIS spacecraft is from SDL."

The panel, while pointing out that the country's space programme depends on a single foreign company for the entire supply of carbon-carbon fibre and composites, said: “This is an area that demands urgent attention of the government.”

“Slowly, we are picking up in production of such things in our own industry. But still, when you look at the total electronics used, we depend heavily on foreign sources, and this has to change” Sivan said.

In the coming days, he said, although the SDL is there, “We may need to expand SDL or bring in more industries that can produce these things.”