[Answered] Discuss how ‘kisan drones’ will help in the development of agriculture sector. What are the initiatives offered by our government for the promotion of drone use?

Introduction: Write down a short note on Kisan drones.
Body: Write down few points on the benefits of Kisan Drones for agriculture sector such as land records etc. Write down a few initiatives taken by the government.
Conclusion: Write a short note on suggestion to improve the drone usage.

Kisan drones refers to the drones used in the life cycle of agriculture, including pre crop and post crop value chain. In the budget 2022, promotion of Kisan drones was announced for the development of agriculture sector. 

Role of Kisan Drone in development of Agriculture sector 

  • It can be used for better land use planning depending upon the terrain of the area, which will increase productivity and efficiency of agriculture. 
  • It can be used for mapping of farm lands to establish ownership that will reduce ownership dispute and enable access to credit. 
  • It can be used for the application of inputs like pesticides, fertilizers, and other nutrients which will make the process faster, safer and more efficient. 
  • It can improve crop assessment, which will improve crop insurance process and provide data for market intervention planning. 
  • It can improve irrigation planning by mapping the whole watershed area, thereby increasing the efficiency of irrigation. 
  • It can enable farm mechanization in areas where terrain is difficult and conventional farm machinery is not available or cannot be used. 
  • It will increase the efficiency of crop planning where specific distances and patterns of cropping are required. 

To promote drone use Government of India has taken several steps 

  • Government brought out Drone rules 2021 to regulate the use and operation of Drones in India. 
  • Government issued Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) for application of pesticides, and other inputs. 
  • The guidelines of Sub-Mission on Agricultural Mechanization (SMAM) have been amended 
    • To provide a grant up to 100% of the cost of agriculture drone or Rs.10 lakhs, whichever is less. 
    • Graduates establishing Custom Hiring Centre (CHC) will be eligible for subsidy up to 50% of the cost of drone and associated equipment up to Rs 5 lakhs. 
    • Drone purchase by existing Custom Hiring Centers which are set up by Cooperative Society of Farmers, FPO and Rural entrepreneurs, 40% of the basic cost of drone and its attachments or Rs. 4 lakhs, whichever less would be available as financial assistance. 
    • The FPOs would be eligible to receive a subsidy of 75% of the cost of the drone if used only for demonstration purposes. 
    • Rs. 6,000/hectare would be given to these implementing agencies that hire drones from CHCs, Hi-tech Hubs, drone manufacturers and startups for demonstration while Rs 3,000/ hectare would be given to implementing agencies that purchase drones for drone demonstrations. 
  • Government also launched PLI scheme for drone and drone components, which will promote investment in drone manufacturing and creation better drone ecosystem in India.

Promotion of drone in agriculture is a welcome step that can usher in development but it will require collaborative effort of all stake holders (manufacturers, Government agencies and Agriculture institutes) along with awareness and capacity building of farmers to achieve its true potential. 


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