Air India pilots have threatened not to operate flights to Kabul if the national carrier does not give "clear-cut guidelines" for flying into Afghanistan as it directly affects the safety of crew and passengers.
The Indian Commercial Pilots Association (ICPA) has said that if the pilots do not get any suitable reply, it would be "forced to ask our members not to operate flights in these unsafe conditions" to Kabul.
In a letter to Executive Director (Operations) of Air India , ICPA General Secretary Captain S Sabu said that the political situation in Kabul has been deteriorating and that the NATO forces have launched a major offensive against insurgents in the region.
National Aviation Corporation of India Limited (I) (erstwhile Indian Airlines) is the only Indian carrier registered with IATA member operating into Kabul.
Pointing out the shortcomings, he said, the airspace (over Kabul) "is not free of conflicting traffic resulting in frequent occurrences of traffic advisories and resolution advisories. Also the air traffic control is poor."
"No special procedure for unlawful interference has been devised after the Kandahar hijack of IC-814. Also there is no clear cut guidelines whether low visibility take off is permitted or not from Kabul," Sabu said.
Apart from this, he said, "no 'Communication Failure' procedure has been circulated to the flight crew nor is it mentioned in the Jepessen emergency chapter".
No topographical map of the region has been provided to the crew as being provided in Jammu, Srinagar and North-East which is a requirement, he claimed.