New Delhi | Jagran Sports Desk: The Ministry of Civil Aviation and the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) on Monday allowed the Board of Cricket Control in India (BCCI) to use drones for live aerial filming of matches in the current 2021-22 cricket season.

In a press release, the Ministry of Civil Aviation said that the Ministry of Law and Justice is framing the Drone Rules 2021 and will give an approval regarding it by March this year. The conditions, however, will stay valid only till December 2021, it noted.

"The drone ecosystem is evolving rapidly in our country. Its utilisation is expanding from agriculture, mining, healthcare and disaster management to sports and entertainment. The granting of this permission is in line with the objectives of the Government of India to promote the commercial use of drones in the country," it said.

The Ministry of Civil Aviation also issued the guidelines for the use drones and said that BCCI will have to obtain clearances from local administration, Defence Ministry, Home Ministry, Indian Air Force and the Airport Authority of India.

It further said that the BCCI will only use drones approved under the standard operating procedures (SOPs), adding that the operator should ensure that remote flight crew are trained through approved FTOs.

The guidelines also stated that drone operator will have to maintain the "records of each RPA flight and make such records available to the DGCA on demand".

"BCCI shall take necessary permission regarding Aerial Photography from Directorate of Regulations and Information, DGCA or Ministry of Defence (as applicable). The photographs/ video graphs, taken through RPAS shall be used by BCCI only. BCCI shall be responsible for safety and security of RPAS and data collected through RPAS," it stated.

The guidelines also said that drones will not be operated in the vicinity of airport as per the provisions of the CAR, adding that BCCI should ensure that no items are discharged or dropped during the flight.

"BCCI shall ensure that uninvolved persons are not allowed within the operation area [including Ground Control Station] and ensure safety conditions specified in the approved SOP and in this letter are adhered to," it said.

In case of an accident, the guidelines stated that drone operator will have to generate a report with full details to Air Safety Directorate of DGCA within 24 hours of such event.

"The operator shall intimate the schedule of operation [location and date of operation] to DGCA [as and when available] well in advance for conducting safety oversight. In this regard, BCCI shall ensure access to DGCA are provided to perform this function," it said.

Posted By: Aalok Sensharma