The Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) has certified a drone manufactured by Aarav Unmanned Systems for being compliant with the No-Permission, No-Takeoff (NP-NT) protocol under the country’s Digital Sky policy, according to a company statement. The company claimed that with this, the drone – known as Insight – has become the first to be certified by the DGCA under the “small” drone (drones that weigh between 2 kg to 25 kg) category. Under the NP-NT protocol, operators need to request prior permission to fly their drones via a mobile app; drones that lack permission from the Digital Sky Platform will not be able to operate. In June this year, drones developed by two Bengaluru start-ups under the visual line of sight (VLOS) category were certified by the DGCA. In this category, the drones have to be within viewing distance of the operator. Regulations under the current Digital Sky policy The Union government had announced drone regulations in August 2018 and said they would come into effect in December, when the Digital Sky Platform for registration of drones was launched. The rules created a registrations and licensing regime for flying drones and providing more legal certainty to drone operators. The key rules in Digital Sky concerning drones are: All drones (other than nano drones) are required to have a unique identification number (UIN). The fee for a fresh UIN is Rs 1000. All drone operators (except for nano and micro drones) are required to obtain an Unmanned Aircraft Operator Permit (UAOP). The fee for a fresh UAOP is…
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