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Itanagar: The Arunachal Pradesh government is looking to take a lead role in promoting drone technology in the northeast region and shall soon be conducting pilot projects for healthcare and afforestation using the technology, officials said on Friday.

Taking the initiative a step further, chief secretary Naresh Kumar recently reviewed the potential of using drones for last-mile delivery and its roadmap to integrate them into the state’s plans, including healthcare supply chain and other applications.

The harsh terrains of the state make it very difficult to transport critical medicines to primary and community health centres located over long distances. Drones would play a critical role in delivering these medicines in less than half the time, thereby playing a huge role in saving lives.

The state is also looking to use drone-based seed-bombing for afforestation in alignment with its vision of increasing its green cover. An area shall soon be earmarked for conducting the seed bombing pilot project.

Furthermore, to help the local youths leverage the newly created opportunities in the drone sector, the government is also looking to kick start a drone training academy in Itanagar, the state capital that would focus on training and skill development.

This move shall enable the youths to equip competent technical skills with a taste of emerging drone technologies, further creating new employment opportunities in the niche sector of drones.

The development comes after the liberalized Drone Rules 2021 and the Production Linked Incentive Scheme for drones, both of which have been recently notified by the Central Government with a vision to make India a global drone hub by 2030.

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