Police to act tough on use of drones around Naval Base INS DegaJul 07,2018 SOURCE: THE HINDU
A couple of weeks ago a Chennai- Vizag commercial jetliner had brush with disaster when a flying drone operated by an amateur photographer had come dangerously close to the aircraft. The aircraft was about to land at INS Dega when the incident took place over Sheelanagar area. The aircraft was around 900 mts above the ground. Taking serious note of the incident and the Eastern Naval Command authorities took up the issue with the Airport Police and urged them to take action against private drone flyers. Flying of drones or UAVs are banned in the city and if someone wants to do it for sake of drone photography, one has to take permission from the Collector and the Commissioner of Police, said Inspector of Airport Police Station, M Seshu. But despite the ban orders, amateur photographers continue to fly the drones, especially the wedding photographers, he added. According to the Commissioner of Police there is more than one reason for banning flying of drone in the city. “Visakhapatnam is not only a developing city but it has a number of sensitive and vital installations such as ENC, HPCL, tankage project, LPG Cavern, Port and oil berths. Almost all cities across the world impose ban on private zones, wherever there are sensitive installations. Drones can be used to photograph the vital installations, where men cannot go and hence it is banned in the city,” he said. Drones pose a major threat to aircraft. “In Visakhapatnam the Indian Navy has positioned its White Tiger Squadron, which comprise MIG 29Ks. The fighter planes not only fly at low altitude but also at high speed and drones can pose a problem,” said a naval officer. According to Mr. Seshu, plans are on to check and seize the equipment. If caught cases can be booked under various sections including IPC Section 336 (an act endangering life or personal safety of others), he said. The city police have a few drones fitted with cameras and they are used to add on to the surveillance plan during high-profile meetings.