Why is it in the news?
DGCA has initiated an inquiry into Air Asia India after one of its pilots alleged safety violations by the airline. He has claimed that the airline asked its pilots to do 98% of landings in “Flap 3” mode, which allows it to save fuel. Flaps are part of wings of an aircraft and they are engaged to create a drag during a landing or a take off. When an aircraft is coming down steeply, it needs to have a drag so that it remains slow, and in these circumstances a pilot has to do a “Flap full” landing.
- The Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) is the regulatory body in the field of Civil Aviation, primarily dealing with safety issues.
- It is responsible for regulation of air transport services to/from/within India and for enforcement of civil air regulations, air safety, and airworthiness standards.
- The DGCA also co-ordinates all regulatory functions with the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO).
Functions of DGCA:
- Registration of civil aircraft.
- Formulation of standards of airworthiness for civil aircraft registered in India and grant of certificates of airworthiness to such aircraft.
- Licensing of pilots, aircraft maintenance engineers and flight engineers, and conducting examinations and checks for that purpose.
- Conducting investigation into accidents/incidents and taking accident prevention measures including formulation of implementation of Safety Aviation Management programmes.
- Coordination at national level for flexi-use of air space by civil and military air traffic agencies and interaction with ICAO for provision of more air routes for civil use through Indian air space.
- Promoting indigenous design and manufacture of aircraft and aircraft components by acting as a catalytic agent.