Did the DRDO get its personnel trained for the Rustom project in unauthorised firms?
Aeronautical Development Establishment (ADE), a lab under the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO), was accused of getting its personnel trained for the unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) Rustom, from an unrecognised firm. In response to an application filed under the Right to Information (RTI) Act, it was informed by the DRDO lab that one of its employees, F Thomas Luke, was not trained in model plane training for the Rustom project at the Bangalore-based firm, E N R Model Aircraft, in 2006. The Director-General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) has informed that E N R Model Aircraft is not recognised to either fly UAVs or remotely piloted vehicles (RPVs) or train persons in model training at the airbase of the Indian Institute of Science (IISc).
However, E N R Model Aircraft has informed that a one month long training was carried out on the verbal order from the Project Director (Rustom) and no documents were given. A former employee of the DRDO who had filed the RTI application, has taken up the matter to the Central Information Commission (CIC).
Earlier, the Air Force audit had found that the ADE guilty of concluding an agreement with BAE Systems against the approval of the competent authority for purchase of LCA parts.