6th ORF Kalpana Chawla Annual Space Policy Dialogue

When: Wednesday, November 17, 2021

to Friday, November 19, 2021

Kalpalna Chawla, the first Indian-American woman in space, was part of a growing trend of cooperation in space between India and the United States. In honor of Ms. Chawla and her tragic death on the Columbia Space Shuttle, the Observer Research Foundation (ORF) initiated an annual dialogue highlighting the success of India’s cooperation with all the major spacefaring powers in space activities. 

Secure World Foundation is proud to be a partner to the 6th ORF Kalpana Chawla Annual Space Dialogue, which was held virtually Nov. 17-19, 2021.


Please note, all timings are in Indian Standard Time IST (GMT +5:30)


Day 1: November 17


  5:00 PM – 5:15 PM |  Welcome Remarks 
  • Rajeswari Rajagopalan, Director of the Centre for Security, Strategy and Technology (CSST), Observer Research Foundation
  • Inaugural Address:  VK Saraswat, Member, NITI Aayog & Chancellor, Jawaharlal Nehru University

5:15 PM – 6:00 PM | Panel Discussion: India's Space Policy: Looking Back, Looking Ahead

  • Senjuti Mallick, Compliance & Strategic Partnerships Specialist, COMSPOC
  • Anirudh Rastogi, Founder and Managing Partner, Ikigai Law
  • Prateep Basu, Co-founder & Chief Executive Officer, SatSure
  • Ajey Lele, Senior Fellow, IDSA
  • Moderator- Rakesh Sood, Distinguished Fellow, ORF

6:00 PM – 6:20 PM | In-Conversation

  • B N Suresh, Indian Aerospace Scientist
  • Siddharth Pandey, Head, Centre of Excellence in Astrobiology, Amity University 

6:20 PM – 7:00 PM | Panel Discussion: Women in Space: Challenges and Way Ahead

  • Ashok GV, Partner, Factum Law
  • Almudena Azcárate Ortega, Associate Researcher, WMD Programme, UNIDIR
  • Nivedita Raju, Associate Researcher, SIPRI
  • Moderator - Senjuti Mallick, Compliance & Strategic Partnerships Specialist, COMSPOC

Day 2: November 18, 2021


4:00 PM – 4:45 PM | Panel Discussion: Emerging Actors in Space

4:45 PM – 5:00 PM| Break

5:00 PM – 5:10 PM | Spotlight Address

Aidan Liddle, UK Ambassador and Permanent Representative to the Conference on Disarmament in Geneva

5:10 PM – 5:55 PM | Panel Discussion: Crowded Outer Space: Of Mega Constellations and Space Junk

  • Kazuto Suzuki, Professor, Graduate School of Public Policy, University of Tokyo
  • Brian Weeden, Director of Program Planning for Secure World Foundation
  • Alice Gorman, Associate Professor, College of Humanities, Arts and Social Sciences, Flinders University
  • Moriba Jah, Associate Professor, Mrs. Pearlie Dashiell Henderson Centennial Fellowship in Engineering, University of Texas at Austin
  • Moderator - Victoria Samson, Washington Office Director, Secure World Foundation

5:55 PM – 6:00 PM | Break

6:00 PM – 6:45 PM | Panel Discussion: Trends in Space Weaponization: Challenges for the Indo-Pacific

  • Jessica West, Senior Researcher, Project Ploughshares
  • Victoria Samson, Washington Office Director, Secure World Foundation
  • Chandrasekhar Srinivasan, JRD Tata Visiting Professor, National Institute of Advanced Studies
  • Rajeswari Rajagopalan, Director, CSST, ORF
  • Moderator- Daniel Porras, Director of Strategic Partnerships & Communications, Secure World Foundation

Day 3: November 19, 2021


4:10 PM – 4:20 PM | Spotlight Address: How Satish Dhawan’s Legacy Changed India’s Space Program

4:20 PM – 5:05 PM | Panel Discussion: Space and Telecommunications

5:05 PM – 5:15 PM | Break

5:15 PM – 6:00 PM | Panel Discussion: Opening up the Indian Space Sector: The Role of the Private Sector

  • Rohan Ganapathy, Director, Bellatrix
  • Bidushi Bhattacharya, CEO & Founder, Astropreneurs HUB
  • Narayan Prasad, Co-Founder, SatSearch
  • Moderator- Ashok GV, Partner, Factum Law

6:00 PM – 6:15 PM  | Break

6:15 PM – 7:00 PM | Panel Discussion: Global Governance of Space

  • Laetitia Cesari Zarkan, Consultant, UNIDIR & Director of Programming, Space Court Foundation
  • Daniel Porras, Director of Strategic Partnerships & Communications at the Secure World Foundation
  • Claudio Leopoldino, Head of Disarmament and Sensitive Technologies Division, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Brazil
  • Antonino Salmeri, Co-Lead of the Space Exploration Project Group, Space Generation Advisory Council (SGAC)
  • Moderator- John Sheldon, Associate Partner, AzurX

7:00 PM – 7:05 PM | Closing Remarks

Rajeswari Rajagopalan, Director of the Centre for Security, Strategy and Technology (CSST), Observer Research Foundation


For more information, please contact SWF Washington Office Director Victoria Samson.

Last updated on November 29, 2021