All the scheduled and non-scheduled airlines in the country have been asked to reduce dependence on foreign pilots whose number at present stands at 266, the government informed Parliament today.
“To overcome the shortage of pilots, all scheduled and non-scheduled airlines have been advised to develop their own in-house strength to reduce the dependence on foreign pilots,” Minister of State for Civil Aviation Jayant Sinha informed the Rajya Sabha today.
The Foreign Aircrew Temporary Authorisation (FATA) provision has also been extended up to December 31, 2020 to cover the shortage of pilots, the Minister said in a written reply. According to the reply, Alliance Air, a subsidiary of Air India has engaged the highest number of 55 foreign pilots followed by 46 pilots recruited by IndiGo. Jet Airways has 41 foreign pilots.
The Minister said the airlines are training their pilots to upgrade them as pilot in command/commanders to reduce dependence on foreign pilots. He said to meet the shortfall of pilots, the validation of the foreign license is done by the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) under provisions of the Aircraft Rules 1937.