The aim of the government is to make India a global drone hub by 2030, said Union Civil Aviation Minister Jyotiraditya Scindia on Thursday, adding that drone application will be ensured in transportation, logistic, defence, mining, infrastructure sectors and more, which will generate job opportunities.
"We are going to ensure drone application in transportation, logistic, defence, mining, infrastructure sectors and more. It will provide more jobs. Our aim is to make India a global drone hub by 2030," he said while speaking about the new Drone Rules 2021.
Scindia today chaired a press conference to discuss the benefits and applications of the new Drone Rules 2021. Senior officials from the Ministry of Civil Aviation (MoCA) and the Airports Authority of India along with other important stakeholders were also present during the event.
Centre on Thursday issued fresh norms for drones usage in the country.
He also appreciated Prime Minister Narendra Modi for his "far-sightedness" highlighting that the new rules create a balance between the country's development and security.
"The drone rules create a balance between India's development and security. This shows PM Modi's far-sightedness and capability. Our drone rules are based on trust, self certification and non-inclusive monitoring," Scindia said.
"In the new drone rules, instead of controlling and regulating, we are trusting controller and manufacturer," said Pradeep Singh Kharola, Secretary, Civil Aviation Ministry.
The Union Minister further remarked that the new drone policy will create history in the country's ideology in the 21st Century.
"PM Modi has always believed that India should lead the world. We must stop being followers and must adopt practice of being global leaders. New drone policy will create history in India's ideology in 21st century," he said.
Scindia also spoke about the future possibility of witnessing air taxis.
"I believe, there is a possibility that similar to taxis running on the road at present, we see taxis in the air, under the drone policy," he said.
In March 2021, the Ministry of Civil Aviation (MoCA) published the Unmanned Aircraft System (UAS) Rules, 2021. They were perceived by academia, startups, end-users and other stakeholders as being restrictive in nature as they involved considerable paperwork, required permissions for every drone flight and very few "free to fly" green zones were available.
The Ministry of Civil Aviation in a release today informed, "Based on the feedback, the Government has decided to repeal the UAS Rules, 2021 and replace the same with the liberalised Drone Rules, 2021."
The relaxation in rules stipulate, no security clearance is now required before any registration or licence issuance for the operation of drones. While the fees for permissions to operate drones has been reduced to nominal levels, the new rules stated.
Drone corridors will be developed for cargo deliveries. It has been specified that coverage of drones under Drone Rules 2021 has increased from 300 kilograms to 500 kilograms to include heavy payload-carrying drones and drone taxis, it added.
Some of the approvals abolished under the new rules are include a unique authorisation number, unique prototype identification number, certificate of conformance, certificate of maintenance, operator permits, authorisation of Research and Development organisation and remote pilot instructor authorisation, the rules added.