DGCA Current Affairs - 2019

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Cabinet approves Aircraft (amendment) bill, 2019

The Union Cabinet on December 11, 2019 approved Aircraft (Amendment) bill, 2019 to amend the Aircrafts act, 1934. The main objective of the bill is to fulfill the safety requirements of International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO).

Key Features of the Bill

The Bill intends to regulate the areas of air navigation. It enhances the punishment from 10 lakh rupees to 1 crore rupees for those failing to comply norms of Government of India. Also, the bill will enable three regulatory bodies namely Bureau of Civil Aviation Security (BCAS), Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) and Aircraft Accident Investigation Bureau (AAIB).

It will increase safety and security of air transport in the country.

Need

In 2018, the ICAO, a global aviation watchdog of the United Nations carried out a Universal Safety Audit Programme for India. The audit showed that the safety score of India declined to 57.44% in 2018 from 65.82% in 2017. The score was far less than Nepal and Pakistan. The audit was performed in air navigation services, aerodromes, aircraft accidents and investigations, ground aids, etc.

The world average score for aircraft safety set by ICAO is 65%. India’s score is far below the world average. With the successful implementation of UDAN scheme, the aircraft carriers and operators have increased. Therefore, it is mandatory to imply strict regulations to keep up the safety of the passengers.

AAI signs pact with Boeing to modernise India’s Air Traffic Management

The Airports Authority of India (AAI) signed a technical assistance agreement with Boeing to develop and modernise India’s Air Traffic Management.

Key Highlights

  • Roadmap: Aerospace major Boeing entered into a technical assistance pact with AAI to jointly develop a comprehensive 10-year roadmap for modernising air traffic management in India. It is expected to be developed within 1.5 years (18 months).
  • The roadmap will be undertaken with a grant from the United States Trade and Development Agency (USTDA).
  • The roadmap so developed by Boeing will be used as guidance in the modernisation of the Indian National Airspace System (NAS). It will be based on global and local best practices of optimally utilising airspace capacity, enhancing communications and also investing in surveillance, navigation and air traffic management.
  • Boeing will also analyse current technologies and processes to identify efficiency improvements that can be implemented in project undertaken at the same time maintaining a practical and safe airspace system.
  • Collaboration: As part of the project Boeing will work closely with Directorate General of Civil Aviation (Indian aviation regulator), airlines operating in India, airport operators and other airspace stakeholders like US-India Aviation Cooperation Program (ACP).
  • Significance: Airports Authority of India (AAI) owns and manages around 125 airports across India thus implementation of modern technologies and adoption of global practices will allow India to increase its airspace capacity significantly. It will improve communications, enable flexible use of airspace in country and will also allow safe processing of additional flights using air navigation infrastructure for more efficient skies in India.