By Express News Service | Published: 21st February 2018
CHITRADURGA: A drone operated by Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) for surveillance crash-landed at an agriculture field belonging to Bangarappa of Doreyagalahatti village near Nayakanahatti of Chitradurga district on Wednesday morning.
The drone which was launched to test the capabilities of its surveillance from the Chitradurga Aeronautical Test Range (CATR) of Challakere taluk took off well from outer perimeter of the range, but fell in the field at around 8 am said Bangarappa. This is the first time a drone fell down during the testing in Chitradurga district.
Scientists Saravana, Shivabalasubramanyam and others visited the crash site and collected the drone and other equipment and took it back to their centre.
The 20 kg weighing drone lost connection with the radar immediately after taking off from the testing arena and fell within a radius of three kilometers from the range in a Ragi field. However, no problems, loss of valuables or life has been reported.
Palamma, an agricultural labourer who was working in the field was shocked when the drone fell on the field. Speaking to Express she questioned, ‘I am still in a state of shock, if it fell on me what might be my fate?’.
‘When I was watering the Ragi plants, the drone came down very fast, I feared to its speed and ran for my safety,” she added.
Bangarappa said, “Falling of drone in my field has created a fear psychosis in me and my neighbouring fields. DRDO without consulting farmers is conducting drone testing programmes nearby the fields. They should consult farmers in future to avoid such accidents.”
If any casualties would have taken place during the accident who would have been responsible, he asked.
According to a scientist, the drone was fitted with a camera and was being tested to conduct surveillance on the borders to ensure that no intruders enter into the Indian territories. Immediately on knowing the failure of the drone, scientists and officials of the CATR arrived at the crash spot and collected the drone from the spot. Nayakanahatti police are investigating the incident.