DRDO to expedite production of 16 Nishant UAVS for CRPF
With the Army clearing the indigenous Nishant UAV for an extended 4.5-hour surveillance sortie and things progressing well in the final stages of operationalisation for army operations at the battalion level, the DRDO is now focusing on meeting an order of 16 Nishants for the CRPF for anti-Maoist operations. The paramilitary force chose the Nishant as it requires no runway and minimal infrastructure for launch and recovery. The Nishant’s launch vehicle carries a rail launcher and the UAV is recovered by a parachute at any chosen location.
The CRPF has had a chance to evaluate the platform and has been impressed with its capabilities. Its decision to own and operate its own fleet of UAVs followed problems with coordination with other agencies like the NTRO. Other paramilitary forces like the BSF, ITBP and SSB are also looking to acquire UAVs and MAVs, and are at various stages of processing such requirements. The police services of several states, including Punjab and Chhattisgarh are also looking for mini UAVs for operations in build-up areas.