Drone manufacturerhas received both type certification and pilot training approvals from the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) for its homegrown ‘kisan’ (farmer) drones.
Under India’s Drone Rules 2021, it is mandatory to get type certification to operate a drone in the country. The Chennai-based startup’s Kisan drones will be used for reducing crop loss, monitoring crop health, yield measurement and mitigating crop losses.
Garuda Aerospace’ GA-AG model has been awarded the type certificate, making it eligible to receive Rs 10 lakh in unsecured loans from the Agri Infrastructure Fund at a 5% interest rate in addition to a 50%-100% subsidy from the government.
“The elusive double certification by DGCA for Type and RPTO certification is a testament to our indigenous Made in India drone manufacturing capacities. We are powered and blessed with strong demands of manufacturing 5000 drones in the next five months catering to many opportunities,” said Agnishwar Jayaprakash, Founder and CEO, Garuda Aerospace, in a press statement.
In October this year, Asteria Aerospace, Dhaksha Unmanned Systems, and General Aeronautics received Type certifications from the DGCA for their drones. The first type certificate was awarded to Gurugram-based IoTechWorld Avigation Pvt Ltd in June 2022. In a note issued in the same month, the central government said that there were 14 drone prototypes that were undergoing certification tests and that the number of certified prototypes may cross 100 over the next three years.
Earlier this month, Garuda Aerospace launched the country’s first drone skilling and training virtual e-learning platform. The startup also announced initiatives to educate and exhibit the efficacy of drones in the agricultural sector across 777 districts in India.
Garuda Aerospace recently commenced its Series A funding round of $30 million at a valuation of $250 million. Indian cricketer Mahendra Singh Dhoni has not only invested in the startup but is also its brand ambassador. The company has a fleet of 400 drones and a team of 500 pilots across 26 cities.