Civilian Drones and India’s Regulatory Response

Carnegie Endowment for International Peace
1 March 2017

Drones present a major challenge to the regulation of navigable airspace. At present, the Government of India’s response has largely been driven by security concerns. But as this paper argues, there are huge benefits from civilian applications of this technology which possibly get lost in a security-centric regulatory agenda. Moreover, by doing so, the State also fails to address other equally important concerns such as property, privacy, and physical integrity. Using insights from comparative law in the United States, and common law approaches, this paper makes the case for a differently structured regulatory framework for drone technology in the civilian context.