The Union Minister of State Civil Aviation General V K Singh (retd.) launched India`s first Centre for Excellence in Research on Drone/UAV Technology and Artificial Intelligence at the Indian Institute of Technology, Guwahati (IIT-G) on Wednesday.
A Skill development Centre for Drone/UAV operation and maintenance was also inaugurated on the same day. An official statement said that the Droneport was among the four initiatives inaugurated by the Minister to promote the development and adoption of drone technology in the northeastern region.
At the event, Singh interacted with the representatives of drone companies and start-ups in the programme which was jointly organised by IIT, Guwahati and the industry body FICCI.
Addressing the inaugural event, the Minister said that having understood the remarkable potential of Drones to transform every sector of the economy, the government under the leadership of Prime Minister Narendra Modi has brought out the new Drone Rules in August and has followed it up with a Production Linked Incentive Scheme (PLI) for manufacturers.
They can be significant creators of employment and economic growth due to their reach, versatility and ease of use, especially in India`s remote and inaccessible areas."Drones offer tremendous benefits to almost all sectors of the economy. They can be significant creators of employment and economic growth due to their reach, versatility and ease of use, especially in India`s remote and inaccessible areas. Its encouraging to see the IITs of our country take some timely initiatives in this direction", he said.
Director of IIT Guwahati, Prof. T.G. Sitharam said the institute took a lead in making significant contributions in self-reliance in several sectors and has been focusing on various technology-based development projects for the benefit of the region.
"Utilizing the salient features which Drone assisted technology offers, the remote and difficult terrains in the entire northeast region can be brought within reach during any emergency.
IIT Guwahati will share its research expertise, impart skill development, set up a droneport and provide all administrative support and fulfil the vision of the Prime Minister to realize the potential of India to be a global drone hub by 2030," Prof. Sitharam added.
Highlighting the FICCI's initiatives, FICCI's Chairman of North Eastern Council Dipankar Barua said that the northeastern region of the country is on a progressive track and welcomes use of drone technology for overall development and especially in areas like, border security, agriculture, health, tourism, mining and infrastructure.