India’s civil aviation regulator, DGCA, will hire more than 400 employees in different capacities to bolster its surveillance capability, according to people aware of the plan, as Indian airlines increase their fleet size to match the pickup in demand for air travel amid the easing of pandemic restrictions.
The finance ministry has given clearance to the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) to hire permanent staff for about 410 posts, the highest in a decade, the people cited earlier told ET, requesting not to be named.
A senior authorities official stated that whereas the variety of business planes of Indian airlines has practically doubled since 2014, the regulator has not created new everlasting job posts since 2014 to deal with the elevated workload attributable to extra planes and elevated flight frequencies, together with these of international airlines.
“The final time DGCA noticed contemporary hiring in full-time positions was in 2014, instantly after the US aviation regulator FAA had downgraded India,” the official stated. “Whereas the variety of planes has elevated from 400 in 2014 to 700 now, no contemporary positions have been created within the DGCA.”
The DGCA has around 1,300 staff. Of those, 634 work within the departments that look into flight security and airworthiness of the 700 business planes. Compared, the US aviation regulator, Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), has around 45,000 technical workers for 7,700 business planes, or six folks per plane.
Based on an estimate by the aviation ministry, Indian airlines are seemingly to add, on common, 100 planes yearly as they give the impression of being to rebuild their companies after Covid-19. Domestic air traffic in India grew by 64% year-on-year in August 2022, with 11 million flyers taking the sky, by the DGCA.
The recruitments on the DGCA, which will probably be executed via the Union Public Service Fee (UPSC), will probably be for positions in in-flight security, airworthiness, coaching and the requirements division.
Foreign auditors, together with the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) and FAA, have usually identified in their audit of Indian aviation security preparedness that the DGCA is beneath staffed and lacks enough educated workforce for surveillance.
During the FAA’s audit final 12 months, the regulator had crammed up positions of 47 flight operation inspectors and 35 consultants in the airworthiness division. But the positions of consultants will not be everlasting.
The matter of air security has come into focus over a previous couple of months after several incidents of technical glitches have been reported throughout Indian airlines, together with SpiceJet, GoFIRST, IndiGo, Air India, Vistara and Air India Express, associated with engine glitches.
Officials mentioned the necessity for hiring extra folks arose because the regulator intends to open places of work in new areas, together with Agartala, Ranchi, Jaipur and Coimbatore.
“There are some locations which have seen an increased flow of air traffic and aircraft movement,” mentioned an official, who didn’t need to be named. “It is not prudent anymore to inspect those locations from regional headquarters. Hence, there is a need to open new offices.”
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The aviation ministry has additionally approved hiring 370 new air traffic controllers, the official mentioned, including that the ministry can be contemplating a proposal to hire 470 extra controllers over the subsequent 4 years.
“There is an acute shortage of air traffic control officers, and in many locations, the ATC officials are not getting adequate rest due to this shortage,” the official mentioned.
(With Inputs from The Economic Times)