New Drone Policy In India

New Drone Policy In India

The new rules are much more relaxed concerning approvals which will lead to providing easier access to civilians to be a drone

New Drone Policy In India

The Ministry of Civil Aviation has replaced the Unmanned Aircraft Systems Rules 2021 which came into effect on 12th March 2021 by introducing the new Drone Rules, 2021 by notifying the same in the Official Gazette on 26th August 2021. The new rules are much more relaxed concerning approvals which will lead to providing easier access to civilians to be drone operators.

This marks a clear change in the government policy to a liberalized scheme by sanctioning civilians such drone operation and usage but also providing required safeguards and security through the anti-rogue drone structure, which was declared in 2019. 

These new rules were broadcasted in July 2021, after the incident at the Indian Air Force base in Jammu of a drone attack. The total forms to be submitted have been reduced to Five from the earlier Twenty Five. 

The approvals for a unique authorization number, unique prototype identification number, certificate of manufacturing and airworthiness, certificate of conformance, certificate of maintenance, import clearance, acceptance of existing drones, operator permits, authorization of R&D organization, student remote pilot license, remote pilot instructor authorization, and drone port authorization, are no longer required under the new rules.

The Ministry also stated that the Digital Sky platform that was envisioned will now be established as a single-window clearance platform. An interactive airspace map is also to be presented on the platform which indicates the yellow, green, and red zones. The Zones have been established to inform the drone operator of the areas within which they can or cannot fly their systems. 

The New drones would require a unique identification number, which can be easily applied to on the digital sky platform after providing the details required. The registration of drones which is mandatory can also be done through the platform. With the new rules, the deregistration process of drones is also predicted to be easier. 

The New rules have removed the requirement of the security clearance which was required as a pre-issue to the registration or license.

Even though the importing of the drone systems is still to be handled by the Directorate General of Foreign Trade, foreign investment or ownership is allowed in companies that operate drones. The New rules have also increased the bandwidth of their application by including the drone systems of weight up to 500 kg. Although relaxations are provided, pilot licenses are still required. 

There are two types of licenses as the Student Remote Pilot Licence and Remote Pilot Licence. 

These licenses can be applied to between the ages of 18 to 65 years only. The fees applicable on these licenses, which were earlier based on the drone size, are no longer the case and have been reduced. Rs 1,00,000 has been stated as the maximum penalty for non-compliance with drone policies. 

Edited By Team CLIQTAX

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