India’s First DGCA Approved Drone Training School
27th July, 2020, Mumbai: Congratulations to The Bombay Flying Club for becoming India’s first DGCA Approved Drone Training School! This is a monumental moment for India’s skies. We did an exclusive interview with Yash Patel from the Bombay Flying Club about how he became interested in drones and what to expect from the training. Yash Patel is a drone designer, pilot and entrepreneur and is India’s youngest DGCA Approved RPAS Trainer.
Read on to know more:
1. How did you become interested in drones?
I am doing this to fulfill my dadu’s dream. My dadu(grandfather) would take me near the airport when I was small and we would spend hours watching airplanes takeoff and land. I have been tinkering and making drones since then. I think my dadu would be proud of what we have achieved today. I cannot thank Capt J.P. Sharma enough, who is also one of India’s RPAS Master Trainers for providing me the opportunity for pursuing my passion and mentoring me.
2. What is the vision of Bombay Flying Club to commence drone training?
The Bombay Flying Club is a DGCA approved Flying Training Organisation, involved in flying training since 1928, having trained the first Commercial Pilot’s Licence holder of India, Shri JRD Tata. The Bombay Flying Club has always believed in transforming trainee students into professional pilots and we have the same vision to transform trainee students into professional drone pilots who will be industry ready to keep the airspace safe and carry out all operations safely and skillfully.
3. Why is training to fly drones essential?
Drone industry is evolving rapidly in India and drones are taking up the challenges to carry out many industrial applications. Drones are going to use the same airspace which is used by manned aircrafts and hence it is important to have trained pilots to do the job while maintaining safety, as well as binding to the rules and regulations.
4. Who should be enrolling for this program?
The future is unmanned, people who want to make a career in the drone industry should be enrolling for this course. Existing drone pilots, recreational as well as commercial drone pilots should also be enrolling in this program to obtain the necessary technical, regulatory knowledge and of course the DGCA Remote Pilot License.
5. What shall one expect from this program?
One can expect a thorough drone training curriculum which is designed as per the prescribed syllabus by the DGCA and an extensive practical training in which the trainee will be exposed to various scenarios and emergencies and will be trained to tackle them and maintain safety. In summary, one can expect to be an industry ready pilot after the course completion.
6. What is the current skill level of drone pilots in India?
A majority of people flying drones today have learnt flying as a hobby and then have ventured into it as a profession. While they do have the skill to fly their aircraft, their skills about safety in the air and technical knowledge needs more proficiency.
7. How will drone training help them?
Drone training would help in improving their skills and guide them on how to fly within the rules and regulations. It will also help them understand about maintaining the safety of public property, and the sky. Training will help the country produce responsible drone pilots who can cater to fly commercial applications safely.
8. What is essential to provide a quality drone training?
It’s imperative to have a well equipped infrastructure and highly skilled instructors with a sense of empathy and the ability to train everyone as per their level of understanding.
10. How has the Government been of support to you?
The Ministry of Civil Aviation(MoCA) and the Directorate General of Civil Aviation(DGCA) have been supporting us extensively to kick start the training in the country, have helped in expediting the process and enabled us to start drone training in the country. All of this could be achieved in spite of the restrictions of the lockdown due to COVID-19.
11. What were the roadblocks you have overcome to launch this program?
It’s been more than a year since we were trying to establish the drone training program and the major difficulty was in procuring the RPA. The Drone Federation of India(DFI) has been instrumental in supporting us and connected us to a manufacturer to procure a correct training RPA. The process was not so challenging however getting clarifications on regulatory questions was a hurdle to which the Drone Federation of India helped us and got us the clarifications. I am also grateful to everyone else who has been working behind the scenes to help us achieve this.
12. Where will you be providing training?
We will be providing the training in Mumbai and Dhule.
13. Would you be helping out pilots with job opportunities?
Yes we would help our students with job opportunities in various sectors of drone services in India which will also help the industry to grow with responsible pilots.
14. Where can one apply and when do you plan to commence the program?
We plan to commence our first batch in mid-August. One can register themselves online on our website (Link: https://www.thebombayflyingclub.com/drones-course.html)
For more information, reach out to :
DGCA Approved RPAS Trainer
Bombay Flying Club
+91 – 9930 387 341
Director of Partnerships
Drone Federation of India
+91 – 8097 117 297