Manish Tiwari pulls up DGCA over fake pilot scam

March 15th, 2011 - 9:05 pm ICT by ANI  

New Delhi, Mar 15 (ANI): Commenting on the recent detection of pilots for possessing fake CPLs (Commercial Pilot Licences) as qualified commanders, Congress spokesperson Manish Tiwari on Tuesday slammed the Director General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) for not being a stern regulator of the aviation sector.

He noted that the DGCA, the apex aviation authority in the country, is not an independent regulator and this factor impacts it’s functioning and creates lack of inter-departmental coordination.

“The real problem lies with the DGCA itself. The fact of the matter is that the Directorate General of Civil Aviation is not an independent regulator. It is not mandated by an act of this Parliament. So therefore, they are susceptible to all kinds of pulls and pressure, which makes even the examining arm of the DGCA not talk to the licensing arm,” Tiwari said in the Lok Sabha.

“So, therefore there is no verification, whether a particular mark sheet is correct, whether a particular person has passed a particular test before a license is submitted (issued),” he added.

Expressing concern over the safety of passengers, Tiwari further said that some concrete action has to be initiated to check on the plethora of flying academies, which grant flying licenses to even incapable trainee pilots.

“Ever since we opened our skies in 1992, there has been a mushrooming of flying academies and these flying academies promise licenses to aspiring pilots even if they are not able to complete the course with regard to the standards which has been laid down,” he said.

The Chief Commercial Officer of Jet Airways, Sudheer Raghavan, earlier today said that no airline would overlook the issue of valid licences, as the safety of passengers is involved.

“There is a zero tolerance attitude in all airlines towards violation of such issues. We will not condone forged documentation because it impacts the safety of our operation and why would we want to do that? There is no reason I can think of or imagine why we would want to take a soft approach to such violation,” Raghavan told reporters on the sidelines of a conference on Aviation organised by the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) here.

In the recent past, there have been cases of forged licenses in the country and on this score, DGCA chief Bharat Bhushan had already passed orders to verify licences of all the pilots.

Air India’s JK Verma was arrested by Delhi Police on Saturday for allegedly using a forged mark sheet to procure the mandatory airline transport pilot’s licence, while Parminder Kaur Gulati, 38, of IndiGo was suspended after a hard landing and arrested on March 8 for a similar offence. (ANI)

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