From the Indian Parliament: Monsoon Session 2017
Air India Disinvestment
The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs (CCEA) in its meeting held on June 28 has given in-principle approval for considering strategic disinvestment of Air India and its five subsidiaries and constitution of Air India Specific Alternative Mechanism. To implement the decision of CCEA, appointment of Transaction Adviser, Legal Adviser and Asset Valuer is to be taken up as per terms and conditions and scope of work of Advisers/ Valuer in accordance with the model RFPs suggested by the Department of Investment and Public Asset Management.
Upgradation of Airports in North Eastern Region
The Airports Authority of India is developing Guwahati Airport as an inter-regional hub, while Agartala, Dibrugarh and Imphal airports are being developed as intra- regional hubs in the North eastern region. For this, AAI has constructed three hangars at Guwahati Airport. Construction of hangars has commenced at Dibrugarh and Imphal airports and tenders have been floated for award of work for construction of hangar at Agartala airport.
Initiatives to Bridge Skill Gap in Civil Aviation Sector
In accordance with the road map for aviation education and skill development contained in the National Civil Aviation Policy, 2016, a number of initiatives have been taken in order to bridge skill gaps wherever these exist.
The Rajiv Gandhi National Aviation University ( RGNAU) has been set up to facilitate and promote aviation studies and research, achieve excellence in areas related to aviation sector, and to produce quality human
resources. RGNAU also conducts Executive Development Programmes and Management Development Programmes for the industry.
During the last five years between 2012 and 2016, Commercial Pilot’s Licence (CPL) was granted to 3,016 persons and Airline Transport Pilot’s Licence (ATPL) to 2,172 persons, while Aircraft Maintenance Engineer (AME) Licence were granted to 159 persons and Basic AME Certificate to 3,644 persons as per data maintained by Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA).
Impact of GST on Airfares
Under the GST regime the applicable tax rate on passenger tickets for economy class has been reduced from 6 to 5 per cent (noncreditable for goods). The tax rate for business and first class has been increased from 9 to 12 per cent (with input tax creditable for both goods and services procured by airlines). With regard to the UDAN Scheme, the applicable tax would also be 5 per cent (non-creditable for goods) on the value of the passenger ticket excluding the subsidies provided by the Central Government and the State Governments. Moreover, since the maximum airfare or cap prescribed for the Regional Connectivity Scheme (RCS) seats is inclusive of the applicable GST and the same is reimbursable to the airline operator(s) concerned at actuals from the Regional Connectivity Fund, there would be no impact on fares charged from passengers booked on RCS seats.
This information was given by the Minister of State for Civil Aviation Jayant Sinha in a written reply to the members of Rajya Sabha during the Monsoon session.
DEFENCE ASPECTS Coastal Defence Security
The coastal security issues are regularly reviewed at appropriate levels with National committee on Strengthening Maritime and Coastal Security (NCSMCS), being the apex body for interministerial and inter-agency coordination. A coastal security mechanism in the form of a three-tiered cover comprising Indian Navy (IN), Indian Coast Guard (ICG) and State Marine Police with demarcated areas of responsibility has been put in place. Coastal Security Exercises are being conducted in all coastal States and Union Territories to assess the effectiveness of existing mechanisms and to address gaps.
Coastal Surveillance Network (CSN) which includes radars has been established along the coastline. Under Phase-I of this project, 45 radars have been made operational. Indian Navy and Indian Coast Guard have been provided with adequate powers under the Coast Guard Act, 1978 and other Acts/Rules to enable them to face various challenges effectively.
Pending Road Projects of BRO
A five year (2015-2020) Long Term Roll on Works plan (LTRoWP) for BRO has been approved for construction/ improvement of 530 roads as identified by the Army. Work is in progress on 373 roads and for 157 roads work is in pre-construction stage. Out of the 373 roads, 17 roads are delayed which were to be completed by 2016 as per the LTRoWP. The revised completion schedule for the 17 roads is as under:-
The 17 roads which are delayed are being executed by BRO through departmental execution and the work is in progress therefore, the additional expenditure, if any, can be ascertained once these roads are completed.
Air Crash involving IAF Aircraft
Every aircraft accident/incident is thoroughly investigated by a Court of Inquiry to ascertain the cause of accident and the recommendations of the completed Court of Inquiry are implemented. Various preventive measures are being taken including invigoration of Aviation Safety Organisation, streamlining of accident/ incident reporting procedure, analytical studies and quality audits of the aircraft fleets to identify vulnerable areas to avoid aircraft accidents. Accident prevention programmes have been given an added thrust to identify risk prone/hazardous areas specific to the aircraft fleets and operational environment to ensure safe practices/procedures.
Year-wise details of accidents involving aircraft and helicopters of Indian Air Force and number of pilots who lost their lives in these accidents during the last three years (2014-15 to 2016-17) and the current year 2017-18 (up to July, 27, 2017).
This information on defence aspects was given by Minister of State for Defence Dr Subhash Bhamre in a written reply to members of Rajya Sabha during the Monsoon session.
Air India Boeing 777 300 ER; Guwahati Airport; the passanger lounge
A Coastal surveillance radar in Kerala region; A BRO Road bridge