The negative public sentiments simmering against China in light of the coronavirus pandemic have taken a turn towards a #BoycottMadeInChina movement in India. Indians are encouraging each other to go vocal for local, even with tech products like smartphones and drones, many of which we import from China.

India's Ministry of Civil Aviation on Friday gave the green light to the establishment of "drone ports and drone corridors" in a draft policy on the use and manufacturing of unmanned aircraft vehicles (UAVs).

The Indian government has also asked local manufacturers to gear up for a huge demand in the unmanned aircraft market that could be worth more than $50 billion in the next 15 years.

The drone ports will be established in permitted areas only and not in strategically important areas and forest zones.

The draft policy also provides guidelines for those who wish to manufacture, operate and even import the UAVs which are classified as either Remotely Piloted Aircraft Systems, Model Remotely Piloted Aircraft Systems or Autonomous Unmanned Aircraft Systems.

The draft rules classify UAVs according to the weight they can carry- nano, micro, small, medium and large. The maximum load that any civilian drones can carry is 150 kilograms.

The news comes after India's Director General of Civil Aviation gave the go-ahead to Indian food delivery apps Swiggy and Zomato to begin testing "Beyond the Visual Line of Sight (BVLOS)" drones for deliveries. The commercial usage of drones would first be launched for e-commerce sites and pharmacies to supply essentials and medicines to India's remote areas.

Indians began reacting excitedly to it on Twitter, calling it a "massive" move by the Indian government - especially after the country recently opened up access for tech players to use geo-location data from the archives of the Indian Space Research Organisation.

In 2019, the country revealed plans to allow long-range drone flights - as a first step towards building an ecosystem of drone services.

Source>> RIA Novosti