Aviation

Aviation ministry to monitor Air India operations daily

DELHI

The Ministry of Civil Aviation (MoCA) will monitor Air India AI)’s operations on a daily basis to ensure that it follows its flight schedule on time. Off late the government has undertaken a close scrutiny of the national carrier’s operations.

Last week, V Somasundaran, Secretary Civil Aviation, issued an order threatening to deduct payment of employees reporting late to work resulting in delays in flight operations. As part of the Centre’s over Rs 30,000-crore financial bailout package provided to AI during the UPA government’s time, the airline was asked to ensure an on time performance (OTP) of 90 per cent for all its flights. The same stood at 60% for the four metro airports in December 2014.

The government will also seek reasons for delay from airports where flights are regularly delayed and ask for such problem to be fixed in a time-bound manner. AI will also be asked to take a closer look at the pick-up and drop system for its crew as this is a key factor in ensuring that flight operations are not delayed.

“The general feeling is that indiscipline is high in the airline. Some steps should be taken to bring discipline in to the system,” Ashok Gajapathi Raju Pusapati, Minister for Civil Aviation, Government of India, said.

While the Minister declined to get into specifics, senior government officials said that those who are performing according to the laid down rules had nothing to worry about. “Job protection should not lead to indiscipline. A job is protected only when the employee does the job expected of him or her,” an official told Hindu Business Line.

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