10 companies and organisations, including Mahindra and Mahindra, have received conditional permission from the Civil Aviation Ministry to use drones for various purposes.
The ministry said it has granted a conditional exemption to the organisations from the Unmanned Aircraft System (UAS) Rules, 2021, and it is ‘valid for a period of one year from the date of approval or until further orders.’
Under the Unmanned Aircraft System (UAS) Rules, 2021, no person shall operate a drone in India unless it conforms to a certificate of airworthiness or is exempted from the equirement for a certificate of airworthiness under these rules.
In a statement, the Ministry said that Mahindra and Mahindra received permission to conduct “drone-based agricultural trials” and use drones for precision spraying on paddy and hot pepper crop in Telangana and Andhra Pradesh.
Two organisations — Gujarat-based Blue Ray Aviation and Telangana-based Asia Pacific Flight Training Academy — have been permitted to conduct “remote pilot training using drones”, the ministry’s statement noted.
Bayer Crop Science has got the permission to conduct “drone-based agricultural research activities” and use drones for agricultural spraying, it mentioned.
The ministry said Pune-based Indian Institute of Tropical Meteorology to conduct atmospheric research at five different locations in the country.
The ministry said the Karnataka government is one of the 10 organisations and it has got the permission to conduct “drone-based aerial survey for creating urban property ownership records in Bengaluru”.
The National Health Mission in Mumbai has also got permission to conduct experimental BVLOS (beyond visual line-of-sight) drone flights to deliver essential healthcare items in tribal areas of Jawhar in Palghar district of Maharashtra.
Gangtok Smart City Development has got permission for drone-based aerial survey for its smart city project, the ministry’s statement mentioned.
It said SAIL has got permission to use drones to conduct “perimeter surveillance” of its steel plant in Burnpur, West Bengal.
Chennai-based Tractors and Farm Equipment Limited has got permission to conduct “drone-based aerial spraying” to assess crop health and prevent crop disease.