- Recently, the Ministry of Agriculture & Farmers Welfare has released Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) for drone application in Agriculture.
- The use of Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs) commonly known as drones have great potential to revolutionize Indian agriculture and ensure the country’s food security.
- The drones were used for the first time in warding off locust attacks in various states of the country.
- Earlier, the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare had launched a Drone-Based vaccine delivery model named, Drone Response and Outreach in North East (i-Drone).
- Important aspects like statutory provisions, flying permissions, area distance restrictions, weight classification, overcrowded areas restriction, drone registration, safety insurance, piloting certification, operation plan, air flight zones, weather conditions,
- SOPs for pre, post and during operation, emergency handling plan.
- Pesticides: Pesticides are one of the important agri-inputs to address protection of crops against a large number of pests that can wash away entire investment of farmers and hence they act as an essential input that yields substantial returns to the farmers.
- Conventional methods of pesticide spray application lead to several problems like:
- Excessive application of chemicals, lower spray uniformity, unnecessary deposition and non-uniform coverage.
- Resulting in excessive usage, water & soil pollution as well as higher expenditure on pesticides.
- With conventional manual sprayers, the safety of operators is also a major concern.
- The use of drone technology as a modern farming technique is aimed at making production more efficient through precise spraying of pesticides and crop nutrients.
- This approach would not only ensure accuracy, uniformity in spray across the field, reduction in the overall use of chemicals within the area, but will also take care of the safety of the operators.
Rules for Drone Regulations in India
- Drone Rules, 2021.
- National Counter Rogue Drones Guidelines 2019.
SOURCE: THE HINDU,THE ECONOMIC TIMES,MINT