The Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) has come up with draft regulations on civil use of drones which will also enable commercial use of drones for tasks like photography, doorstep delivery and even passenger transport, Civil Aviation Minister Ashok Gajapathi Raju announced on 1 November.
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#1: Govt. has categorized 5 types of drones: nano, micro, mini, small and large, and the weights of these drones range from 250 gram to 150 kgs.
#2: Drones under 250 grams, which are called nano, won’t be required to have any security clearance for usage. Micro drones, which are 250 grams to 2 kgs, will have security clearance within 2 days.
#3: Drones are henceforth, allowed to be used for photography, medical uses, ad film making and more activities. E-commerce companies can use drones for home delivery and restaurants can use drones for food delivery.
#4: There shall be ‘no-drone’ zones at some specific, important locations like operational aerodromes across the country, within 5-kms radius of Vijay Chowk in New Delhi (because Parliament, Supreme Court and Rashtrapati Bhawan is situated there). Besides, drones won’t be allowed within 500 meters of strategic political and military locations, from mobile platforms such as car, ship or air craft; and national parks and wildlife sanctuaries (unless approved by Environment Ministry).
#5: Except Nano Drones, all other types of drones will be required different clearances from various departments. Air defense clearance is must, so that security authorities are aware of the route of the drone.
#6: However, drones which are less than 2 kg, and flying within 200 meters, can fly without any clearance, once registered with the Civil Aviation Ministry. In future, Govt. may allow drones for carrying passengers as well! (Uber, please take notice)
#7: Govt. has said that strict privacy protection laws will be implemented, for using drones. The operator of drones cannot film or record anyone, without permission, and the route cannot be altered, once approved.
Next time when you buy a drone and fly in India. Remember these DGCA guidelines for drones in India.
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