India’s aviation safety and security has got a thumbs up from the UN oversight body International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO). In a recently done security audit by the ICAO, the Bureau of Civil Aviation Security, (BCAS) fully met the target of implementation of security norms thus steering clear from the threat of a possible downgrading of India’s safety ranking. ICAO carries out periodic audits of member countries and assesses their implementation of norms of security and safety measures in handling all areas of civil aviation security and safety including full ground handling at the airports, aerodromes, including the track record of companies involved, airlines and flight schedules, and paths managed by the air traffic control (ATC) etc.
The ICAO team conducted audit of Indian civil aviation security and of security at Delhi airport in October across nine audit areas including legislative and regulatory architecture, performance of security personnel, security training, catering services and ground handling etc.
The move, officials said, will help upgrade US regulator Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) aviation security rating of India thereby enabling starting more flights to US destinations that were in limbo because of bad rating of security and safety measures. In an earlier audit done in 2011, the ICAO had given 89% compliance to civil aviation security ans safety ratings. To fall in line with ICAO measures, country’s nodal aviation security body BCAS started the process of hiring around 400-500 personnel to help tide over the acute manpower shortage. The ministry of civil aviation also set the ball rolling to induct 21 personnel at different levels in the Aircraft Accident Investigation Bureau (AAIB).