DGCA conducted more than 3,600 surprise checks in over three years

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New Delhi, Feb 4 (PTI) Aviation regulator DGCA has conducted more than 3,600 surprise checks in more than three years, Lok Sabha was informed on Thursday.

The Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) issues an annual surveillance plan which contains programme of surveillance and regulatory audits for scheduled and non-scheduled operators.

'The DGCA conducted 3,615 surprise checks during the last 3 years (2018-2020) and 57 surprise checks have been reported during the current year till 29.01.2021. No aircraft has been grounded as a result of these surprise checks,' Minister of State for Civil Aviation Hardeep Singh Puri said in a written reply.

In another written reply, the minister said there has been a severe adverse impact on revenue performance of Air India with a drop of 67 per cent in sales compared to last year as on January 23, 2021.

'Air Transportation Bubbles have been formalised with 24 countries but travel demand is relatively poor as compared to pre-COVID period because of quarantine and visa restrictions. Domestic operations are picking up with the permissible capacity deployment now raised to 80 per cent of the pre-COVID level.

'There were negligible flight operations in the months of April & May, 2020 which have also severely impacted the financial performance of Air India,' he said.

According to the minister, resumption of regular scheduled international operation depends on many factors, including the normalisation of domestic air travel, behaviour of the coronavirus globally and entry restrictions imposed on Indian nationals by other countries.

'While the domestic travel is coming close to its pre-COVID level, the behaviour of the coronavirus and its new strains require close monitoring so that the gains achieved in containing the COVID-19 pandemic in India are not lost,' he said. PTI RAM ANU ANU