The Civil Aviation Safety Advisory Council (CASAC), a government-appointed air safety panel, has criticised the aviation safety regulator for its leniency towards pilots charged with serious offences such as fudging training records.
In a letter sent to the civil aviation ministry on January 3, the independent air safety panel alleged that the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) set a wrong precedence by letting off two Jet Airways pilot charged of fudging training records by a mere one-month suspension.
The issue was brought to the ministry’s notice a day after it ordered suspension of a senior Air India pilot facing charges of faking simulator training.
“There is a possibility that pilots charged with such offences could challenge punishment exceeding one month suspension,” said Captain Mohan Ranganathan.
Last week an Air India pilot Captain RS Dhillon was suspended after the airline’s vigilance department found that he had fudged simulator-training records.
The CASAC letter addressed to civil aviation secretary KN Srivasthava also alleged that many pilots with fake licenses were flying around.
“The DGCA took action against just about 15 but let several others, including sons and daughters of DGCA officials off the hook. The flying club audits have been eyewash and several of them got away because of the political backing,” alleged the letter.