Digitisation leads to jump in number of registered drone pilots

According to data from the Civil Aviation Ministry, the number of drone pilot certifications awarded in July increased by 43% as compared to June. As many as 222 remote pilot certificates were granted in July compared to just 155 in June.

According to a report by IANS, this increase can be attributed to the ministry’s decision to provide exemptions that made registrations of new remote pilot organisations and certificates easier.

According to the Drone Rules, 2021, anyone who wishes to establish a remote pilot training organisation has to apply on the digital sky platform. The Director General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) must respond within 60 days, if the application is approved.

A new Civil Aviation Ministry order on July 15, 2022, gave the DGCA conditional exemption that allowed it to approve the establishment of one or many remote pilot training organisations over email to speed up the process.

Additionally, the DGCA was ordered to accept application fees for these training organisations via the Bharatkosh platform or any other suitable means to ensure quickest possible certification.

The system has been decentralised in an attempt to rapidly increase the number of certified drone pilots in India. The DGCA licenses training centres, and the training centres are given autonomous control to provide drone pilot certifications.