The Government of India on Thursday announced a set of new drone rules which make it easier to operate drones in the country. Seeing the wide range of drone usage and its future scope, the government wants India to be the ‘global drone hub’ by the year 2030. The Drone 2021 Rules, as it would be called, introduces an interactive airspace map divided into green, yellow, and red zones. These new zones will be displayed on the digital sky platform within 30 days of the publication of these drone rules.
According to the new rules, the number of forms has been reduced from 25 to just 5, for both the drone manufacturers and operators. Also, the types of fees have been greatly reduced from 72 to 4. There will be no requirement for security clearance before the issuance of any registration or license.
It’s easier to fly drones in India now
The new rules increase the maximum loading capacity of drones (including drone taxis) from 300Kg to 500Kg. After the rules come into effect, there will be “No restriction on foreign ownership in Indian drone companies”. Nano drones and micro drones for non-commercial usage will not require a remote pilot license.
As mentioned in the new drone rules, there will be no permission required for operating drones in green zones. The yellow zone has been drastically reduced from 45 km to 12 km around the perimeters of airports, as asked by the industry. Digital Sky Platform shall be developed which will require minimal human intervention.
The platform will automatically generate most permission. It will also facilitate an easy transfer and deregistration of drones. The manufacturers and importers will be allowed to generate a unique identification number for drones through the Digital Sky Platform.
The government of India said, “drones offer tremendous benefits to almost all sectors of the economy like – agriculture, mining, infrastructure, surveillance, emergency response, transportation, geo-spatial mapping, defense, and law enforcement, etc.”
“Drones can be significant creators of employment and economic growth due to their reach, versatility, and ease of use, especially in India’s remote and inaccessible areas. In view of its traditional strengths in innovation, information technology, frugal engineering, and huge domestic demand”.