New Delhi, Jan 29 (IANS): The government on Wednesday approved creation of 75 posts for technical staff at the aviation regulator to look after safety, training and certification responsibilities.
The Civil Aviation Ministry said the 75 posts were created in the Flight Standards Directorate (FSD), an arm of the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) which will comprise Chief Flight Operations Inspector (CFOI), Deputy Chief Flight Operations Inspectors (Dy. CFOIs), Senior Flight Operations Inspectors (Senior FOIs) and Flight Operations Inspectors (FOIs).
"These 75 posts have been created on the basis of the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) standards and are meant for both, aircraft and helicopter operations," the ministry said in a statement. "It has also been decided, in principle, to pay the incumbents to be recruited against these posts as per the industry standard."
According to the ministry, the FSD arm of the DGCA conducts inspection of air-crew, safety oversight, training programmes, standardisation of trainee captains, certification of airline operators, examination of operational documents and other examinations.
The move is significant as up till now, the DGCA does not have any regular FOIs and deputed pilots from airlines to carry out safety oversight functions.
Earlier the US-based Federal Aviation Authority (FAA) had pointed out the issue in its audit of the DGCA.
"Creation of these posts followed by recruitment will not only address the finding of FAA but also strengthen the FSD removing any possibility of conflict of interest," the ministry said. "The recruitment rules for the newly-created posts are in the final stage and the process of recruitment is likely to start in February this year."
In the meantime, DGCA has appointed 18 FOIs on contract basis who will be directly paid by the government.
The government is also in the final stages of creating a Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) which will take the place of the DGCA and provide it with greater financial autonomy. "The (Civil Aviation Authority) bill is already pending in parliament. The ministry is making all efforts to ensure that the bill is passed in the coming session of Parliament," the statement added.