The civil aviation ministry hopes to ask the FAA conduct a fresh safety audit of India's aviation watchdog DGCA in June this year as reported by FE in its March 8 edition. The 29 FOIs will now get the training, for which the tenure will depend on the type of aircraft they are expected to assess. The process should be completed by May-June, after which we would look for a fresh FAA audit, an official said.
At a meeting on Friday at the DGCA regarding regulations for pilots, which was attended by several airline officials including SpiceJet COO Sanjiv Kapoor, it was decided that the pilot licence renewal time would be extended from two to five years. Moreover, DGCA officials also agreed that pre-flight breath analysers for pilots need not be done by a doctor, but could also be done by paramedics.
Further, SpiceJet may also get some relief with the DGCA not expected to take action on the airline for allegedly compromising safety when on March 17 the cabin crew danced during Holi celebrations aboard an aircraft. The DGCA had sent a showcause notice on the basis of YouTube videos, but the airline has reportedly apologised for the episode.