India’s aviation watchdog, the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA), is reportedly feeling a staff crunch with India’s aviation sector expanding rapidly. The regulator monitors all airlines, ensuring that rules are followed and corrective measures are taken. But with no hiring done since 2014, the DGCA feels that now’s the time to invite job applications.
More than 400 employees needed
The DGCA is looking to hire more people to keep a check on India’s airlines, which have been growing their fleet size steadily over the years. According to a report by The Economic Times, people aware of the plans have said that the regulator is planning to hire permanent staff for about 410 positions – the highest in a decade.
It was in 2014 when the DGCA last hired permanent staff members, but since then, India’s fleet has almost doubled from 400 to 700. Naturally, the current workforce feels quite overworked with more daily flights, including those of offshore carriers.
The DGCA needs more employees to keep up with the country’s growing aviation sector. Photo: Getty Images
Even the 2014 hiring was prompted by the FAA’s inspection of India, in which it downgraded the country. The workload has increased tremendously in the last 8 years, and it seems logical to hire more people to keep up with the sector’s growth.
ET reports that the DGCA has around 1,300 employees. Of these, 634 work in the departments that look into flight safety and airworthiness of the 700 commercial aircraft. In comparison, the FAA has around 45,000 workers for around 7,700 commercial planes.
India is projected to add 100 aircraft annually as airlines look to expand business. Last month, more than 10 million flyers took to the skies in India as domestic traffic grew 64% year on year. The DGCA needs more staff to bolster its surveillance capabilities and maintain a good safety record in the country.
India’s fleet size has almost doubled since 2014. Photo: Getty Images
Some officials told ET that with the aviation sector reaching far corners of the country, there is now a need for the DGCA to open regional offices. One of the sources added,
“There are some locations which have seen increased flow of air traffic and aircraft movement. It is not prudent anymore to inspect those locations from regional headquarters. Hence, there is a need to open new offices.”
Keeping that in mind, locations like Agartala, Ranchi, Jaipur, and Coimbatore will likely see new offices.
The DGCA has had its hands full in the last few months. It has been on a clean-up drive lately, issuing warnings and performing regular and sporadic checks on aircraft of multiple airlines.
The DGCA has been very busy in the last few months. Photo: Akshay Mantri
Earlier this year, it announced a two-month special audit of all Indian airlines to check everything, from the availability of trained, experienced, and authorized staff to the maintenance record-keeping of all aircraft.
It also performed checks on more than 250 aircraft across the country after passengers complained about the shoddy conditions of the interiors of several airplanes.
If industry projections are believed, the DGCA will likely be very busy in the coming years. And it would definitely need a stronger workforce to keep up with the increasing workload.
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Source: The Economic Times