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Govt wants your opinion on the new drone rules it has framed

The civil aviation ministry said that the new guidelines, which will replace the UAS Rules 2021 released on March 12, 2021, were evolved over a premise of trust, self-certification, and non-intrusive monitoring.

Govt wants your opinion on the new drone rules it has framed-VPN
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New Delhi, First Published Jul 15, 2021, 1:06 PM IST
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The civil aviation ministry has released the updated Drone Rules, 2021, for feedback from the general public. 

The ministry said that the new guidelines, which will replace the UAS Rules 2021 released on March 12, 2021, were evolved over a premise of trust, self-certification, and non-intrusive monitoring.

Let us take a look at some key points mentioned in the draft Drone Rules, 2021:

* No restriction on drone operations by India-registered foreign-owned firms.

* Directorate General of Foreign Trade to regulate the import of drones and drone parts 

* Security clearance not required prior to licence issuance or registration.  

* R&D entities will not need a certificate of airworthiness, remote pilot licence, unique identification number and prior permission.

*  Drone coverage to be increased enhanced from 300 kg to 500 kg and will also include drone taxis. 

* DGCA will outline training requirements, provide pilot licences online and oversee drone schools. Authorised drone schools to carry out all drone training and testing. 

* Some approvals to be abolished and the number of forms to been reduced from 25 to 6. These include import clearance, acceptance of existing drones, operator permits, authorisation of R&D organisation, unique authorisation number, certificate of conformance, unique prototype identification number, certificate of maintenance, student remote pilot licence, drone port authorisation and remote pilot instructor authorisation.

* Fee not to be linked with the drone size and will be reduced to nominal levels  

* Safety features will have to be notified. These include 'No permission, no take-off (NPNT), geofencing and real-time tracking beacon. Tenure of six months shall be provided for compliance. 

* Digital sky platform will have a minimal human interface. The platform will evolve as a business-friendly single-window online system, and most permissions will be self-generated.   

* Digital sky platform to display interactive airspace map with green, yellow and red zones. The yellow zone perimeter has been lowered from 45 km to 12 km from the airport limits. 

* No flight permission needed up to 400 feet of green zones and up to 200 feet in the area between 8 and 12 km of the yellow zone. 

* Microdrones (for non-commercial use), nano drones and drones used for R&D organisations do not require a pilot licence. 

* Quality Council of India and certification bodies authorised by it will issue Certificate of Airworthiness.   

* Digital sky platform to allow the manufacturer to generate their drone's unique identification number via self-certification route. 
 
* Process for transfer and deregistration of drones to be simplified. 

* DGCA to prescribe standard operating procedures and training procedure manuals on the digital sky platform for self-monitoring by users. Unless there is a significant departure from prescribed procedures, no approvals will be required.

* Violation of Drone Rules, 2021 in imposing a maximum penalty of one lakh rupees. This reduced fine will not apply to penalties in respect of violation of other laws. 

* Cargo deliveries to be done through dedicated drone corridors.  

* To facilitate a business-friendly regulatory regime, a drone promotion council to be set up.

The full draft of the new Drone Rules 2021 is available HERE. People can send in their suggestions with the subject line: 'Suggestions for draft Drone Rules, 2021'.

Kameshwar Mishra,
Ministry of Civil Aviation, B Block, 
Rajiv Gandhi Bhavan, New Delhi
110003
sdit.div-moca@gov.in 

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