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« Reply #125 on: August 03, 2015, 08:01:34 PM »
sidnov
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Re:

this is a seriously good speed at which govt is acting up.... let's just hope for the best....
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« Reply #126 on: August 03, 2015, 08:05:16 PM »
sidnov
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Re:

BTW our petition is stuck at 155 signatures...... that's definitely not what we expected.... its  kinda dud... maybe people just didn't like it..
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« Reply #127 on: August 03, 2015, 08:22:29 PM »
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Don't want to hack the thread, but i was just thinking why after so many years of this beautiful hobby in India, is now all-of-a-sudden treated as "banned"!!! Then realized, not the whole hobby is banned but the portion where some attraction of commercial uses like event photography and pizza delivery is advertised, and it made it as "chocolaty"  Indian Rupees Drool commercialization. This could be a cause for the attraction Drool for a group of people in authorities and is treated as "banned" to get some  Drool...

(i'm avoiding use of few words, afraid which is treated as blame to authorities)
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« Reply #128 on: August 03, 2015, 08:34:14 PM »
foamybuilder
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Awesome initiative santanucus
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« Reply #129 on: August 03, 2015, 10:19:01 PM »
santanucus
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Don't want to hack the thread, but i was just thinking why after so many years of this beautiful hobby in India, is now all-of-a-sudden treated as "banned"!!! Then realized, not the whole hobby is banned but the portion where some attraction of commercial uses like event photography and pizza delivery is advertised....

Actually, as of now the whole hobby is banned as per the last DGCA notification and not merely commercial ventures. Personally as a new hobbyist, I am interested only in the revocation of the ban on recreational flying. Although I have nothing against the commercial use of drones, it is the business of the respective companies to address that issue.

There is some positive news coming in (for hobbyists) if we go by the news in the Indian Express posted above.

So this is a time for jumping in with full momentum as it appears that critical issues are being discussed right now. All members are requested to sign the change.org petition and submit letters through PG Portal in PM's website. We need to have our voices heard without delay.

@foamybuilder Thanks ! I hope some more members of this group would make their voices heard to the authorities before the crucial decision is taken.
« Last Edit: August 03, 2015, 10:35:54 PM by santanucus » Logged
 

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« Reply #130 on: August 03, 2015, 10:23:25 PM »
santanucus
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Specifically the following line in the article bothers me

Quote
FAA’s proposed rules permit certified operators to fly UAVs weighing up to 55 pounds during day time. Commercial drones will be permitted to fly at a speed of up to 100 miles per hour and at heights of up to 500 feet. Operators will have to renew their permit every two years.

Is this true? I have not seen this proposal from FAA anywhere. This means licensing. While licensing may work in USA, in India it will as usual lead to license raj and corrupt practices.

EDIT: Okay...I found it. Its at https://www.faa.gov/uas/nprm/ and the proposal is meant for conducting non-recreational operations. Hope the govt. does not mix up the two here.
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« Reply #131 on: August 03, 2015, 10:27:07 PM »
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Milind Sir also pointed out regarding the meeting on 20th August. I wonder what will be the final outcome. Cant wait.
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« Reply #132 on: August 03, 2015, 10:33:38 PM »
santanucus
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As per the link posted by you, the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) has been asked to submit their recommendations in the next two to three weeks. I think they are planning to get the feedback before that.

The PMO Office has sent my letter to Ministry of Civil Aviation and from there it is likely to be forwarded to DGCA. In the meantime since MHA has been asked to submit their opinion (probably on the security point of view) and they are likely to do so in a couple of weeks, I think sending a copy of my letter through PG Portal to MHA would probably be worthwhile.
« Last Edit: August 03, 2015, 11:20:55 PM by santanucus » Logged
 

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« Reply #133 on: August 04, 2015, 10:35:03 AM »
Dharmik
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Good work Santanucus. Let's hope to get something positive from govt.
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« Reply #134 on: August 04, 2015, 03:50:26 PM »
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Re:

Even I am going to send a letter today.
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« Reply #135 on: August 04, 2015, 08:20:59 PM »
santanucus
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That's good. I hope more members send letters before the final decisions are made by the government.
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« Reply #136 on: August 10, 2015, 01:28:14 PM »
sidnov
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Re:

any updates ?
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« Reply #137 on: August 10, 2015, 09:30:48 PM »
santanucus
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The status of my letter has been updated today. It has been forwarded from the Ministry of Civil Aviation to DGCA and status is being shown as "under process".

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« Reply #138 on: August 10, 2015, 09:35:14 PM »
Dharmik
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nice to hear that. keep it up.
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« Reply #139 on: August 10, 2015, 11:40:15 PM »
santanucus
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I have submitted a short form of the letter covering the security aspects to the Ministry of Home Affairs. Their view is critical from the national security point of view. Here is the text of the forwarding letter and the attached main letter:

Quote
To
Shri Rajnath Singh
Honourable Union Home Minister
North Block, Central Secretariat
New Delhi – 110001


Respected Sir,

Sub:    Framing of policy on the flying of UAV (Unmanned Aerial Vehicles) / UAS / Quadcopters / Drones etc. by recreational users and hobbyists in the context of the prevailing DGCA restrictions - Request to take into consideration the interests of hobbyists and flyers while at the same time ensuring the safety and security of the nation

Kindly find enclosed / attached a letter (in PDF file) on the above-mentioned subject.

Your personal attention in respect of the details mentioned in the attached letter is urgently solicited.

Thanking You,                        
Yours faithfully
Santanu Acharya

Quote
To
Shri Rajnath Singh
Honourable Union Home Minister
North Block, Central Secretariat
New Delhi – 110001


Respected Sir,

Sub: Framing of policy on the flying of UAV (Unmanned Aerial Vehicles) / UAS / Quadcopters / Drones etc. by recreational users and hobbyists in the context of the prevailing DGCA restrictions - Request to take into consideration the interests of hobbyists and flyers while at the same time ensuring the safety and security of the nation

As you are aware, the commercial availability and proliferation of UAVs and certain incidents involving Multirotors (commercially known as Drones) in this country has given rise to security concerns that such equipments might be be misused by anti-national elements.

2.   Much before drones became commercially available and popular, a thriving community of hobbyists in India have been building and flying various types of Unmanned Aerial Vehicles which include planes, helicopters, gliders and drones. More recently the availability of such readymade UAVs of various sizes in the market has also given rise to a community of recreational flyers who fly such UAV/ drones for recreation or for photography. Drones are now also being used all around the world for various commercial and non-commercial civilian applications including aerial and tourism related photography, agriculture, transport of goods and so on. This hobby also involves developing a lot of knowledge about electronics, aerodynamics and promotes/generates interest in science and technology amongst the youngsters. Like any technology, UAVs are also dual-use. These may be used for constructive or destructive purposes, either intentionally or unintentionally.

3.   The question naturally arises as to how the security aspects can be taken care of without stifling innovation, recreation and the beneficial uses of such UAVs. Pending formulation of such policy, DGCA has restricted the flying of all kinds of UAVs vide Public Notice issued from File No. 05-13/2014-AED dated 7th October 2014. It is understood from newspaper reports that DGCA has sought opinion from various government and non-government agencies, including the Ministry of Home Affairs before formulating a policy.

4.   It is to be noted that USA, one of the few countries to formulate a policy in this respect has not prohibited its citizens from recreational use of UAVs inspite of its post 9/11 security concerns. They have not made any requirement of flying licence mandatory either. Instead they have issued some guidelines for recreational users flying drones, which are given at the URL http://knowbeforeyoufly.org/for-recreational-users/ .

5.    Apart from recreational flying, one of the key uses of a UAV is in the domain of aerial photography. In fact a large number of tourists carry a UAV along with them these days to the countries where they visit, so that they can get a different perspective of their tourist destination. Many tourists are known to produce wonderful aerial photos and videos and publish them online. Such amateur photos and videos act as an important mode of free publicity for tourism in the destination country.

   There is a concern that aerial photography will put our national security at risk. While there is an element of truth here, usually the extent of such a risk is an over-estimation. In any case with high resolution aerial photographs of almost all of our country available through Google Maps and even higher resolution photographs available to Military Satellites of various countries, aerial photographs shot from drones (which have very limited flying ability due to battery life constraints) can hardly add to such a security risk. Most commercially available and hobby drones can fly for an average of 15 minutes or less and make enough noise which make them unsuitable for low level surveillance.

6.    Sir, inspite of the above, there is a need to regulate the use of the UAVs keeping in view the security concerns of the nation as well as to maintain the safety, security and privacy of the people while at the same time ensuring that laws or rules should not be so restrictive that it stifles innovation and puts India and Indians at a disadvantageous position vis-à-vis other countries of the world. Regulations are definitely needed but not paranoia. The potential for its misuse or accident is no more than the potential of accident or misuse of a vehicle or an aircraft. But we don’t ban driving of a vehicle or flying of an aircraft.

Accordingly, here are a few suggestions which may kindly be kept in consideration while framing any new Rule / Law /Guidelines or for providing any opinion in this respect

Proposals for Guidelines for Recreational users of UAVs

-   Recreational use of UAVs by hobbyists and amateurs may be allowed subject to certain guidelines and conditions
-   Commercial use of UAVs may be restricted and subjected to permission from the proper authorities
-   Flying upto 400 feet in the air may be allowed
-   Flying over crowded areas should not be allowed
-   Flying over sensitive infrastructure like power plants, water treatment plants, military areas, airports, jails, restricted zones etc. should not be allowed
-   Flying within 5 km of Airport should not be allowed without permission from ATC
-   The total payload carrying capacity of UAVs may be restricted upto a certain limit
-   UAVs should be flown within eyesight
-   UAV exclusion zones may be created and made known to flyers. Flying and aerial photography may be prohibited in such exclusion zones.

7.   There have been arguments by certain quarters that licence may be issued for flying UAVs similar to that issued for vehicles or for persons who are flying. However, such a proposal in respect of recreational flyers will be counter-productive in such a big country like ours. Apart from taxing the government machinery, it may give rise to the infamous “Licence Raj”, corruption, red tape and harassment. In the USA, the FAA has not proposed any licensing in respect of the recreational users. However, if at all some control needs to be exercised in respect of flying of UAVs considering security aspects, a proposal is given to use e-Governance for this purpose for “self-registration” of UAVs by persons flying them.

Proposal for Online Self-Registration System for recreational users of UAV using e-Governance

-   A web portal may be created for self-registration of UAV fliers and their UAVs
-   Flyers can be citizens of India or International tourists and can self-register themselves online. This will be a one-time registration
-   Domestic flyers may be identified and linked with Aadhar Card Number or Election Identity Card number
-   International flyers may be identified and linked with their passport numbers
-   Once the person self-registers himself/herself online, he/she can register one or more UAVs flown by him/her
-   Photos, weight and other capabilities of the UAV e.g camera, FPV, telemetry etc. and similar details can be uploaded by the user himself/herself
-   After entering details of UAV, a printout of UAV identification number can be generated from the system and pasted on the UAV itself
-   Places where they are likely to fly can be entered online by the user himself. For example, if someone wants to fly in Goa, he/she will enter the time and dates and locations online. Flying locations can be indicated on a Google Map mashup at the site or just mentioned.
-   The map can also automatically display restricted areas where flying should not be done. Time dependent restricted areas can also be shown e.g. around Red Fort area on August 15
-   After the user registers the location to fly (which can be a date or a range of dates) he/she can generate a printout, which he should carry with himself at the time of flying. Authorities can also ask for the slip anytime from the flier

With the above system, no manual intervention and permission is required. No specific agency is required to deploy personnel for licensing. However, all UAVs are self-registered and have a registration number. All flyers are also identified. No harassment will be made to persons possessing self-registration printouts. Also authorities can take action against persons without self-registration documents and seize UAVs not having self-registration documents.

8.   Sir, being a hobbyist, it is my earnest request that a balance between the security concerns of the nation, the interests of innovators / hobbyists / students and recreational fliers of UAVs and the potential benefits of the use UAVs in civilian applications may be kept in perspective while forming a rational view and policy on the issue.

Thanking you,
Yours faithfully
XYZ


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« Reply #140 on: August 11, 2015, 01:24:46 PM »
sidnov
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Re:

great to hear that
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« Reply #141 on: August 13, 2015, 09:57:43 PM »
santanucus
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Status Update of the MHA letter

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MHA IS Division-1 deals with Internal Security of the country: http://www.mha.nic.in/isd1

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« Reply #142 on: August 13, 2015, 10:47:27 PM »
Dharmik
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Good. seems you have good knowledge to deal with govt. authorities. Any idea in what form it will come out?
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« Reply #143 on: August 13, 2015, 10:55:17 PM »
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My thanks to Santanu, and others who helped, for driving this course of action.
We may actually get a reaction from the Govt.

Which is more than can be said for my attempts, which were a protest email, and a suggestions email to DGCA, just after midnight of 11th-12th Oct 2014, immediately after DGCA's notice became public.
Needless to say, no reply to date!

This time hopefully the Jt Secy will respond.
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« Reply #144 on: August 14, 2015, 12:39:45 AM »
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Good. seems you have good knowledge to deal with govt. authorities.

I second that. Thanks Santanu
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« Reply #145 on: August 14, 2015, 07:13:25 AM »
Darshan for multirotors
Well now it flies!!
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Any reply as of yet?
asking cause date of action was 12th
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« Reply #146 on: August 14, 2015, 09:06:40 AM »
santanucus
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Thanks @KK Iyer Sir and @v2 eagle.

Whether we'd actually get an effective reply remains to be seen Smiley We'd probably get some kind of reply because in respect of letters sent through PG Portal some kind of final "action taken" has to be shown. There is also a provision for sending reminders.

I don't expect them to provide any ground-breaking reply. Most probably the reply would be something like "Your views are being kept in consideration" and they would then close the matter. But since we know that the Government is also taking steps to do something about the issue, views sent by hobbyists will be kept in the agenda as the issue relates to hobbyists and recreational fliers. That's why if some letters are sent at this stage with different kind of views, it may help in influencing the policy.

@Dharmik ... "The date of action" relates to the "Forwarded to" row. That means whoever dealt with the letter in the previous stage has forwarded it to the next stage. It doesn't mean that they have actually taken any action in respect of the contents of the letter itself. In this case it only means that it has been sent from the Ministry's office which deals with such grievance to the proper section dealing with the matter i.e. in this case IS Division-I.

When it reaches the last stage, that is the section of the Ministry which actually deals with the matter, status will show "Under process". That's why in respect of the other letter sent to PM, it went from PMO to Ministry of Civil Aviation to DGCA, which is the final authority to deal with the matter and is being shown as "under process".

This chain of forwarding in government departments is time taking but instead of writing a letter directly to the lower authority, it is usually more effective.

Lets see what comes out of it but if some more letters are sent by members with some concrete views, it will be more helpful at this stage because "hit the nail while it is hot" Wink
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« Reply #147 on: August 14, 2015, 10:29:01 AM »
saikat
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I have started getting spam from the site to my work email asking
me to support various causes.


This is not a good sign if my email address is being harvested for other purposes.

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« Reply #148 on: August 14, 2015, 01:56:43 PM »
sidnov
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Re:

nice work santanu
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« Reply #149 on: August 15, 2015, 08:00:09 AM »
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Very low sigh ups. This hobby has more takers
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