MICAV-2013 postponed over agitation

Following agitation in Chitradurga, MICAV-2013, the national-level competition for Micro Air Vehicles (MICAV), part of a Rs 100-crore National Programme on MICAV (NP-MICAV), has been postponed till December.

The event, which was originally planned for June 17, was postponed abruptly. Officials from the National Aeronautics Laboratories (NAL) — the lead organiser — stated that they cannot comment on the reasons for the postponement.

Sources, however, point out that the event had to be cancelled initially, as there were a lot of protests in Chitradurga over land being diverted to the Defence Research Development Organisation (DRDO), Bhabha Atomic Research Centre (BARC), Isro and other scientific establishments.

In fact, the National Green Tribunal had stayed activities in the area, after hearing a petition from activists and locals.

G Ramesh, Head, MAV Unit, NAL, explained that the competition will allow for innovative MICAVs and tactics to be developed, tested and executed. “The MICAVs will have to deal with perceived challenges like the use of chemicals and landmines by terrorists among other things.”

The scenario for the competition will be to use MICAV teams to assess the situation inside critical structures occupied by terrorists and report to the commander.

Ramesh had told Deccan Herald that the teams will be judged based on many criteria, including design and build of the vehicles. The winning team will be awarded a cash prize of Rs 3 lakh, the runners-up will take away Rs two lakh, while the second runners-up and best design will take Rs one lakh each,” he said.

Sources said the event might be scheduled in Mysore.

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