It will now be mandatory for foreign pilots wanting to fly in India to be well-versed in spoken English and get medical fitness certificates from Class-I Indian doctors.
Tightening the rules for allowing foreign pilots to operate in India after the May 22 Mangalore air crash
claimed 158 lives, aviation regulator Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) now wants them to get fitness
certificates from Indian doctors apart from the ones which they may get from abroad.
Earlier, medical certificates from foreign countries were accepted by the DGCA, but the new draft rule now makes it
mandatory for them to get their fitness certified by senior Indian doctors.
Though proficiency in English was made essential for pilots flying on the Indian sky after the 1996 Charkhi Dadri
mid-air collision, the draft rules make it clear that a pilot would be allowed to validate his license in India only if he
or she was proficient in the language to ensure proper communication with the air traffic control.
When a foreign pilot applies for validation of the Commercial Pilot's License or the license to fly in India, the
DGCA could also prescribe any test, including on English proficiency, which the applicant would have to undergo,
official sources said.
These are the new provisions being added to make the 1999 Civil Aviation Requirement or rules for foreign pilots'
operations more stringent, they said.
Various aspects of these and other rules are being strengthened and upgraded by the DGCA on the basis of the
recommendations and suggestions being made by aviation safety experts as well as the Air Safety Advisory Council, set up immediately after the Mangalore air crash, the sources added.