Drones use in India for commercial purpose will soon become a reality as India on 1st November,2017 drafted set of guidelines to make the use of drones and other unmanned aerial vehicles under a legal framework. Drone use policy in India was unveiled by the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) and may be in place by 31 December. Below are the key points of the proposed regulations:
Classification of Drones in India
Based on weight capacity drones has been classified into five types as nano, micro, mini, small and large. These will be weighing from 250 grams in weight to over 150 kg. Nano drones will be less than 250g in weight and will not need any security clearance.
Except for nano drones, One will require to get an air defence clearance so that aviation as well as security authorities are aware of the flight path. Micro category drones will range from 250 g to 2 kg and will require approvals. The approvals may be get within two days for micro drones. The drones having weight less than 2 kg and operating under 200 feet of height will need to get registered once and need no further nods.
As per the policy drones can be used for purposes such as photography, medical uses, ad film making and so on. E-commerce companies will also be able to use drones as well. There is also a provision to consider Air-rickshaws or passenger drones under drone policy of India.
There will be some areas where these drone’s entry will be prohibited such as as above operational aerodromes and within 5 km of Vijay Chowk in Delhi, within 500 metres from strategic locations, from mobile platforms such as car, ship or air craft, over eco-sensitive zones like national parks and wildlife sanctuaries (unless approved by Environment Ministry).
Government agencies are kept away from policies framework and will be free to use drones according to their own guidelines.
E-commerce major Amazon has already used drones in rural England for the delivery of a popcorn bag.