ISLAMABAD: Science and Technology Minister Fawad Chaudhry said Tuesday Pakistan would soon announce its drone policy after consultation with all the stakeholders.
Talking to Geo News anchorperson Hamid Mir, Chaudhry said there was a ban on the use of drones in Pakistan and that “I have now talked to Prime Minister Imran Khan and defence officials in this regard and a national policy on this would be announced soon”.
“Initially drones were used for defence purposes but now they are a very important monitoring tool for police and agriculture sector,” said the minister.
While responding to a question on their use against locusts attack, he said a private company has developed an advanced drone which would be handed over to the National Locust Control Centre in a few days to deal with the crisis.
Chaudhry said these were very helpful in spraying of pesticides as they only targeted the affected plants and one did not need to cover the whole farm, thus, saving costs.
The science minister said private Pakistani companies and the National Radio and Telecommunication Corporation (NRTC) were doing an exemplary job.
‘Made in Pakistan’
On Monday, Chaudhry said the drones that were fully capable of monitoring farms and spraying disinfectants would revolutionise the field of agriculture and farming.
The federal minister shared a picture of two agricultural drones under the initiative ‘Made in Pakistan’ on Twitter, revealing that they had the ability to spray 16 litres of pesticide for 18 minutes.
Chaudhry added that earlier, an entire field had to be sprayed but the sensors on these drones detected certain infected patches and spray pesticides on them.
A strong proponent of ‘Made in Pakistan’ initiative, the federal minister has recently also said the government intended to turn the country into a ‘technological power’.
Strides in field of electronic devices
Under the ‘Made in Pakistan’ vision, Chaudhry had said PM Imran handed over the first batch of local made ventilators to the National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA) last week.
Amid general concern over the healthcare facilities during the pandemic, the PTI minister had vowed in April that Pakistan would soon begin production of ventilators and other safety gear on a local level.
Last month, the minister said the ventilators were in the final phase of testing while he announced that the government had achieved another landmark as Drug Regulatory Authority of Pakistan (DRAP) approved the country’s first COVID-19 testing kit.
The science and health ministries had also earlier signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) regarding the indigenous development of electro-medical devices.