However, it’s not just pilot licenses that are getting a makeover. The Amendment to Aircraft Rules, 1937 also ushers in substantial changes under Rule 66, addressing a pressing issue related to the display of “false lights” around aerodromes
The Indian aviation landscape is soaring to new heights, and it’s all thanks to the historic Amendment to Aircraft Rules, 1937, officially gazetted on October 10, 2023. This remarkable milestone signals a transformative shift in India’s aviation regulations, one that prioritizes both safety and ease of doing business.
Taking a step back, the Amendment to the Aircraft Rules, 1937 is the outcome of extensive consultations with industry stakeholders, all aimed at fortifying the existing safety and security framework. These amendments don’t just tweak the status quo; they bring India’s aviation regulations in line with international best practices and the standards set by the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO). In fact, some of these changes had already been rolled out on April 13, 2023, with the Amendment to the Aircraft (Demolition of Obstructions caused by Building and Trees, etc.) Rules, 1994.
A significant highlight of these changes revolves around the amendment of Rule 39C, which extends the validity of licenses for Airline Transport Pilot License (ATPL) and Commercial Pilot License (CPL) holders from five to ten years. This move promises to alleviate administrative burdens for pilots and aviation authorities, fostering a more streamlined and efficient licensing process.
However, it’s not just pilot licenses that are getting a makeover. The Amendment to Aircraft Rules, 1937 also ushers in substantial changes under Rule 66, addressing a pressing issue related to the display of “false lights” around aerodromes. The update expands the definition of “light” to include lantern lights, wish kites, and laser lights. Moreover, the government’s jurisdiction to take action against those displaying disruptive lights now extends from 5 kilometers to 5 nautical miles around an aerodrome.
If these rogue lights remain unattended for 24 hours, the government is authorized to step in and extinguish them, and the incident is reported to the police station for legal action under the Indian Penal Code (IPC). In cases where the light source is unidentifiable or it relocates, it becomes the duty of the airport or airline operator to promptly notify the local police station, initiating potential criminal proceedings.
And it doesn’t stop there. The redundant Rule 118 for validation of foreign licenses has been removed, in a step aimed at modernizing the regulations to meet the evolving needs of the aviation sector.
To further boost the sector’s growth and sustainability, a new clause has been introduced under Schedule III. This clause provides flexibility for Air Traffic Controller License holders regarding recency and competency requirements. In situations where there are limited movements or watch hours, Air Traffic Controller license holders must complete a minimum of ten hours of simulated exercises, including emergencies. Subsequently, they must undergo a skill assessment for their respective rating within ten consecutive days of commencing these exercises.
In essence, these amendments mark a significant step towards strengthening aviation safety, security, and the ease of doing business in India’s aviation sector. These reforms are not just about compliance; they are about growth and sustainability, ensuring that India’s aviation industry remains at the forefront of global aviation standards. As the Indian aviation sector takes its leap of faith into this new era, we can expect smoother skies ahead for both travelers and the industry as a whole.
Disclaimer: This post has been written exclusively for educational purposes. The securities mentioned are only examples and not recommendations. It is based on several secondary sources on the internet and is subject to changes. Please consult an expert before making related decisions.