From the In­dian Par­lia­ment: Mon­soon Ses­sion 2017

India Strategic - - CONTENTS -

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.

A Coastal sur­veil­lance radar in Ker­ala re­gion; A BRO Road bridge

Air In­dia Boe­ing 777 300 ER; Guwahati Air­port; the pas­sanger lounge

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