THE Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) has formed technical teams in Mumbai and New Delhi airports to perform random safety checks on aircraft belonging to foreign airlines, imposing penalties for lapses.
Checks will cover aircraft hardware and mandatory documents such as the Air Operating Certificate and cabin crew licences, according to a checklist based on ICAO recommendations.
Penalties range from warning the airline to comply within a specified time frame and grounding the aircraft to denying the airline the right to fly into India for major safety violations.
The move comes after the US’ Federal Aviation Administration downgraded India’s aviation safety ranking two weeks ago (TTG Asia e-Daily, February 4, 2014).
Rajendra Churiwala, director-east, IATA Agents Association of India, said: “Safety checks are quite normal, it is the intensity of such checks that could determine what kind of impact it will have on international carriers flying to India.”
Ariana Afghan Airlines, All Nippon Airways and SriLankan Airlines were most recently penalised for safety lapses, said a DGCA source.