With the popularity of unmanned aerial vehicles or UAVs it is about time that somebody started to pen down the rule and regulations. As it turns out at present, India doesn’t have a well-defined law on UAVs.
The Ministry of Civil Aviation is likely to frame guidelines for the use of such drones by civilians. Union Minister for Civil Aviation Ashok Gajapathy Raju spoke of the new draft rules. “Time for some exciting action in the sky – we will issue draft regulations for use of Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (Drones) in a couple of days”, the Minister tweeted.
UAV matter is at present at a stale-mate situation as there are no rules or policies to ensure their operational safety. However apparently, their sale is not yet illegal here in India. What seems to be the problem is the usage.
In April 2016, the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA), which comes under the Civil Aviation Ministry, had proposed detailed guidelines for civilian use of drones. Under those guidelines, drone users need to get permission and a unique number for each drone, along with security clearance from the Bureau of Civil Aviation.
All drone operations over 200 feet would require the DGCA’s nod. Earlier in September there were reports that the Civil Aviation Ministry have raised a few objections over the Home Ministry’s bid to frame a new law to regulate the drones. The DGCA has told the Home Ministry that licensing and safety of all aircraft — manned or unmanned — was their domain, the report said.
Recently, the Home Ministry circulated a draft law to regulate the low flying objects, for inter-ministerial consultations.
The regulations were circulated more than a year after the DGCA put out draft guidelines for obtaining unique identification numbers for citizens to use drones in the public domain.
That being said, the buzz around the town is that whether it will affect other industries which depend on small drones to get the job done.