Concerns for Drone Proliferation in India and Challenges to Air Space Management

Wing Commander Swaim Prakash Singh, MSc, MPhil, psc+ is working as a Senior Fellow at the Centre for Air Power Studies (CAPS), New Delhi. He is currently pursuing Ph.D. (thesis submitted) in Defence and Strategic Studies.
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  • October-December 2022

    The launch of Drone Policy 2021 has dramatically liberalised the procurement and operation of drones, or Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS), in the Indian skies. Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s personal insights into the outreach of technology to the masses is a booster step towards the success of drone industry in India. As part of ‘Atmanirbharta’, the government has rolled out a vision to make India a drone manufacturing hub by 2030. The unprecedented confidence instilled in major companies and start-ups seems to be the direct result of Production Linked Investment (PLI) schemes as incentives by the government. However, even as the drone industry gears up to take flight, it is also prudent to keep pace with counter-drone measures and issues of airspace management. The air defence agencies need to be fully equipped with sensors, shooters, and integrated procedures for the system to develop wholesomely and eliminate any security concerns. This article attempts to provide the details of drone proliferation, counterdrone measures, and the need for air space management.

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