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Updated January 24th, 2024 at 16:27 IST

DGCA slaps Rs 1.10 crore penalty on Air India for safety violations on long-range routes

Earlier this month, DGCA issued show-cause notices to both Air India and SpiceJet for failing to deploy pilots trained to operate in low visibility conditions.

Business Desk
 Air India safety violations
Air India safety violations | Image:Air India
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DGCA fines Air India: The Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) has imposed a penalty of Rs 1.10 crore on Air India, citing safety violations in connection with flights operating on specific long-range routes. The penalty comes in the wake of a comprehensive investigation prompted by a voluntary safety report from an Air India employee, highlighting irregularities in flights on critical long-distance terrains.

In an official statement, the DGCA said, "Pursuant to the receipt of a voluntary safety report from an airline employee alleging safety violations of flights operated by Air India on certain long-range terrain critical routes, DGCA conducted a comprehensive investigation into the alleged violations."

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The investigation revealed non-compliance by the airline, leading to the issuance of a show cause notice to the accountable manager of Air India Limited. The response to the notice was thoroughly examined, considering the stipulations under relevant statutory provisions and performance limits outlined by the Original Equipment Manufacturer (OEM).

An Air India spokesperson said, “We disagree with the order issued by the DGCA. The issues raised were thoroughly examined by Air India along with external experts concluding that there was no compromise on safety, whatsoever. We are studying the order in detail and will review the options available to us including our right to appeal as well as taking it up with the regulator."

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This penalty follows recent actions by the DGCA against IndiGo, which incurred a fine of Rs 1.20 crore for an incident where passengers disembarked onto the tarmac to consume food, drawing strong criticism from Union Minister Jyotiraditya Scindia.

Earlier this month, the DGCA issued show-cause notices to both Air India and SpiceJet for failing to deploy pilots trained to operate in low visibility conditions. This move was prompted by the diversion of several flights due to dense fog at the Delhi airport between December 25-28, significantly impacting flight operations.

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The safety violations in Air India's case relate to leased aircraft operations, which were found to be outside regulatory and OEM performance limits. As a consequence, DGCA has initiated enforcement action, imposing a penalty of Rs 1.10 crore on the national carrier.

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Published January 24th, 2024 at 13:30 IST

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