The Minister of State for Civil Aviation, Jayant Sinha, has announced that the government is looking to put into effect the concept of ‘digital sky” for smooth, uninterrupted operations of drones.
At a consultation event organised by the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) for finalising the guidelines on drone usage, Jayant Sinha stated, “Increasingly the way in which people are thinking about the use of unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) is that you create a digital space where every point in that 3-D digital space is mapped out.”
“When someone wants to operate a drone, they will have to file a digital flight plan and through a software monitoring programme and ground radars you ensure that the digital flight plan is faithfully followed,” Sinha said, adding that the fast-increasing number of drones in the country has made digitisation crucial.
During the event, industry representatives and stakeholders voted in favour of a single-window clearance system for drones. Apart from that, they called for a revision of the height limit set by the government on the flying of UAVs as well as a proper mechanism for retrieving and punishing rogue drones.
Other suggestions made during the consultation event include proper training of pilots, efficient handling of emergencies, etc. According to sources, Sinha was also asked to shed light on the guidelines for ensuring that drone pilots are medically fit to operate the contraptions.
“While the public consultation process is on, we get lots of comments from different segments of the aviation sector. We will take those into consideration and we will see how best to handle those concerns,” concluded Jayant Sinha.