India’s aviation ministry issued an order on Monday which requires all drones that fly in the country to get registered before 31st January. All unmanned aerial vehicles or drones can be registered through digital sky platform ( ) before the given deadline.

The order was brought after unregistered drones came into the notice of aviation ministry which violates the norms prescribed by the Directorate General of Civil Aviation. In some cases, drone accidents have also been reported.

These steps are taken to regulate drone numbers. An order by SK Mishra, joint secretary of aviation ministry said: “In order to facilitate the identification of civil drones and drone operators, a one time opportunity for voluntary disclosure of such drones and drone operators is now being provided.”

After completing the voluntary disclosure a Drone Acknowledgement Number (DAN) and Ownership Acknowledgement Number (OAN) will be issued online for validation of drones in India. However, A DAN or OAN does not give operators in India right to fly drones if it doesn’t meet Civil Aviation Norms. Further, ownership of drones in India without a valid DAN or OAN will invite penal action as per applicable laws.

The government has categorized the Indian region into three zones-Red, Yellow, and  Green.  Green zones can be used by anyone and yellow zones are controlled airspace whereas Flying is not permitted in Red Zone. Usually, red zone areas are in close proximity to airports, military areas and international borders. DGCA in its rules issued in 2018 had categorized drones into five categories on the basis of weights from 250 grams to 150 kilograms.

The Aviation ministry also said that it will further bring second set of regulations that would allow operation of drones beyond line of sight.