Indian helicopter operators have asked the country’s Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) to revoke a new requirement making pilots personally responsible for conducting security checks on passengers. Ahead of India’s long election campaign, which ends this month and involves extensive use of chartered helicopters by politicians, the DGCA sent out a directive that obliges pilots to personally search passengers for guns and other illegal items.
Miami, Florida-based online flight operations system provider SchedAero (Avinode, Booth H430) announced here at ABACE 2014 it has received recognition from the Indian Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) as an electronic record keeping system for Flight and Duty Times.
DGCA requirements mandate that operators have a secure and transparent computerized system with an online portal that the agency can use to monitor their operations. SchedAero is a subsidiary of aviation data and charter marketplace portal provider Avinode.
In its recommendations for improving general aviation in India, an ICAO-led group has recommended to India’s Ministry of Civil Aviation that the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) include: Fully implementing a safety management system and ensure the industry is fully compliant; hiring and training sufficient qualified technical and administrative staff to carry out its obligations, and removing the pilot experience requirements for nonscheduled operators that require 500 hours, including 25 hours in type.
With general aviation regulations in India caught up in a web of complex rules, the industry has expressed a need for a stable regulatory framework that would allow it to grow in a sound, more straightforward regulatory regime. Addressing this, an ICAO-led group drafted a set of recommendations for a policy on general aviation–including fixed-wing aircraft, helicopters and seaplanes–and submitted them to the Ministry of Civil Aviation in April 2012.
India’s economic downturn over the past couple of years has resulted in negative growth for general aviation there, which has “hit rock bottom,” according to Rohit Kapur, president of the country’s Business Aviation Operators Association (BAOA).
India’s Business Aircraft Operators Association (BAOA) accused the country’s Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) of trying to undermine the industry’s reputation by leaking observations made about nonscheduled operators during routine safety checks. According to the industry group, government officials have disclosed the findings of the checks to divert blame from the DGCA in the wake of the January 2014 downgrading of India’s safety rating by the U.S.
The economic downturn over the past couple of years has resulted in negative growth for Indian general aviation, which has “hit rock bottom,” according to Rohit Kapur, president of the country’s Business Aircraft Operators Association (BAOA). Nevertheless, the Indian bizav community hopes that a general election next month will result in more decisive political leadership and effect change to a regulatory environment that many agree has stifled growth in their own industry and the wider Indian economy.
As India enters the final phase of elections carried out in phases over five weeks starting April 7, the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) issued strict safety guidelines for general aviation aircraft operators conducting flights for candidates. It warned that non-compliance could lead to suspension of licenses and air operator permits.
The U.S. Federal Aviation Administration has downgraded its International Aviation Safety Assessment (IASA) program rating of India from a Category 1 to a Category 2 based on a recent reassessment of the country’s civil aviation authority. Under Category 2, India’s airlines can continue to fly existing service to the U.S., but they cannot establish any new service until the FAA reinstates the country’s Category 1 status.
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