The number of cases of drones being detected around airports that pose a hazard to aeroplanes have increased since 2016, with 18 such incidents so far this year, according to official data. Aviation regulator DGCA has restricted the civil use of drones or unmanned aircraft systems by non-government agencies, organisations or individuals. Against this backdrop, the number of cases of drones, which are a hazard for aeroplanes, detected around airports have gone up in the last one year.
Till December 15 this year, the number of such incidents stood at 18 – more than double the count recorded in 2016 when it was just 9 – as per data provided by the civil aviation ministry to the Lok Sabha. In 2014, there were two such cases. Minister of State for Civil Aviation Jayant Sinha told the Lower House no dedicated international standards are available as of now with respect to regulating drones.
“However, the guidelines published by the ICAO and regulations of drones developed by various civil aviation authorities were analysed during formulation of draft Civil Aviation Requirements (CAR) on operations of remotely piloted aircraft systems,” he said in a written reply. The International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) is a specialised agency of the United Nations. The ministry has already come out with draft norms for regulation of drones.
“There is no proposal to introduce any licensing system. However, in the draft CAR there is a provision for issuance of Unmanned Aircraft Operator Permit (for) certain weight category of drones,” Sinha said.