Regulations Current Affairs - 2020

Regulations of Drones in India hastened

On January 13, 2020, the Indian Aviation Ministry announced that registration of all drones in the country is mandatory. The Ministry has given January 31, 2020 as deadline for the users to register their drones.

Highlights

Every drone is to be provided with a Unique Identification Number (UIN) under the scheme. GoI has opened an online portal called “digital sky” for the users to register their drones. Upon registration, the users will be provided with UIN, Unmanned Aircraft Operator Limit (UAOP), ownership acknowledgement number and Drone acknowledgement number.

Legislation

The drone owners failing to register their drones will face actions under the Aircraft act, 1934 and Indian Penal Code. The aircraft act governs aviation in India.

Significance

According to the FICCI committee on drones, there are 50,000 to 60,000 illegal drones in the country. Also, the latest drone tragedies across the world has forced the GoI to hasten its actions towards regulation of drones.

In December 2018, the world’s second busiest airport, the Heathrow airport remained closed for 3 days after multiple rogue drones were seen flying over the perimeter. Around 1000 flights were cancelled. Major General Soleimani was killed by the US military drone fired missile in Baghdad airport in January 2020.

FSSAI constitutes B Sesikeran committee to review food labelling standards

Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) has constituted three-member committee to look into draft food labelling and display regulations-Food Safety and Standards (Labelling and Display) Regulations 2018. The committee will be headed by B Sesikeran, former director of National Institute of Nutrition (NIN)and comprises of current NIN director Hemalatha and AIIMS’ endocrinologist Nikhil Tandon.

Key Facts

FSSAI had released draft Food Safety and Standards (Labelling and Display) Regulations 2018 in April 2018. It had proposed mandatory red-label marking on such packaged food products which are high in fat, sugar and salt contents. The front-of-the-pack red label mark was aimed to make consumers more aware about healthy and unhealthy food products. But, Union Health Ministry had put on hold on the draft regulations, after industry stakeholders had expressed concerns, citing that it may have an adverse impact on evolving packaged food industry. So address their concerns, FSSAI has decided to set up committee of experts with health and nutrition background to look into t draft regulations.

Significance

India can learn from best practices from the other countries such as Denmark, Norway and Singapore on labelling and trans-fat regulations. Consultation process started by FSSAI is seen as an attempt to begin dialogue among stakeholders on proposed draft labelling regulations. Moreover, recently, several companies had pledged to FSSAI’s Eat Right Movement and have made voluntary commitments to reduce salt, sugar and fat in their products. FSSAI in future is likely to push more and more companies to make similar voluntary commitments.