Prelims level : Science & Technology Mains level : Technology, Economic Development, Bio diversity, Environment, Security and Disaster Management
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Why in News:

  • Washington has warned that Chinese-made drones could be giving spy agencies in Beijing
  • “unfettered access” to stolen data.


  • The U.S. government has “strong concerns about any technology product that takes American data into the territory of an authoritarian State that permits its intelligence services to have unfettered access to that data or otherwise abuses that access,”
  • The warning comes as China’s tech sector attracts unprecedented scrutiny amid China-US trade war. Washington has cranked up the heat on China’s Huawei by banning American companies from selling or transferring U.S. technology to the telecom’s giant. U.S. intelligence believes Huawei is backed by the
  • Chinese military and that its equipment could provide Beijing’s spy agencies with a
  • backdoor into the communications networks of other countries.

India and drones:

  • The National Drones Policy drafted by the Ministry of Civil Aviation came into effect
  • With the policy coming into effect, flying drones or remotely-piloted aircraft have become legal in India.
  • Also, the Ministry of Civil Aviation has kick-started the online registration of drones in India through its Digital Sky portal.

Highlights of the policy

  • Under the new policy, Nano drones which weigh less than 250 grams or equal does not need a registration or license.
  • Digital Sky portal – It is an online platform as part of an enforcement system designated as No Permission No Take-off (NPNT).
  • It includes procedures to conduct a drone operation, including final flight permission immediately before the operation.
  • Permission – Following registration, DGCA will issue a Unique Identification Number (UIN) or Unmanned Aircraft Operator’s Permit (UAOP)
  • Zones – Flying in the ‘green zones will require only intimation of the time and location of the flights via the portal or the app.
  • But permissions will be required for flying in ‘yellow zones’, and flights will not be allowed
  • in the ‘red zones.
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