He made this assertion after holding a meeting with Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) Chairman A.S. Kiran Kumar at the Lokpriya Gopinath Bordoloi International Airport in the city.
It is for the first time that ISRO is setting up such an exclusive research facility in Assam to explore the possibility of using geospatial technology, which includes data generated through Global Positioning System (GPS), Geographical Information System (GIS) and Satellite Remote Sensing for expediting development of Assam and using the remote sensing technology for accurate flood warning system, prevention of soil erosion and landslide besides others.
During the meeting, Sonowal requested the ISRO Chairman to integrate space technology for the state's overall development. The Chief Minister informed him that the state government would provide land to the ISRO free of cost for opening the research centre.
Along with other objectives, the research centre will be mandated to be used extensively for collecting and interpreting satellite data over the last few decades which can be made accessible to the young researchers through this centre in Guwahati, Sonowal said.
He said that the state government would ink an MoU with the Department of Space for leveraging the potentials of Assam for using space technology.
Sonowal added that the state government and ISRO would work together for development of the region once the MoU is signed.
Drawing Kumar's attention to the verdant natural resources of Assam -- both flora and fauna -- and the Brahmaputra and Barak providing the lifeline to the entire state, Sonowal sought ISRO's help to use space technology for drawing a broad remote sensing map to stop the alleged illegal trade of natural resources.
He also sought ISRO's help to use space technology as a deterrent against deforestation, which is largely responsible for sedimentation and siltation of the river bed.
Sonowal hoped that both the state government and ISRO can work together in carrying out survey in studying the depth of the Brahmaputra river. He said that this would assist in his government's proposed move of dredging the Brahmaputra in its entire stretch in the state from Sadiya to Dhubri.