Civil aviation in India
Civil aviation in India, the world's third-largest civil aviation market (c. January 2018), traces its origin back to 1911, when the first commercial civil aviation flight took off from a polo ground in Allahabad carrying mail across the Yamuna river to Naini.
Air India is India's national flag carrier after merging with Indian in 2011 and plays a major role in connecting India with the rest of the world. IndiGo, Air India, Spicejet, GoAir and Vistara, AirAsia India are the major carriers in order of their market share. These airlines connect more than 80 cities across India and also operate overseas routes after the liberalisation of Indian aviation. Several other foreign airlines connect Indian cities with other major cities across the globe. However, a large section of country's air transport potential remains untapped, even though the Mumbai–Delhi air corridor is ranked the world's third-busiest route.
India is the third-largest civil aviation market in the world having a potential of becoming second-largest aviation market by 2020. It recorded an air traffic of 131 million passengers in 2016, of which 100 million were domestic passengers. The largest airline by international passenger traffic was Jet Airways which transported over 10 million passengers in and out of India in 2016, followed by Air India and AI Express (8.8 million). In third place was Emirates (5.46 million), which is the largest foreign airline operating in India.
- 1 History
- 2 Aviation economy
- 3 Management
- 4 Organizations
- 5 Infrastructure
- 6 See also
- 7 References
Modern civil Aviation in India traces back to 18 February 1911, when the first commercial civil aviation flight took off from Allahabad for Naini over a distance of 6 miles (9.7 km). During the Allahabad Exhibition, Henri Pequet, a French aviator, carried 6,500 pieces of mail on a Humber biplane from the exhibition to the receiving office at Allahabad. This is the world's first official airmail service. On 15 October 1932, J.R.D. Tata flew a consignment of mail from Karachi to Juhu Airport. His airline later became Air India.
In March 1953, the Indian Parliament passed the Air Corporations Act. India's airline industry was nationalised and the eight domestic airlines operating independently at that time – Deccan Airways, Airways India, Bharat Airways, Himalayan Aviation, Kalinga Airlines, Indian National Airways, Air India and Air Services of India – were merged into two government-owned entities. Indian Airlines focussed on domestic routes and Air India International on international services. The International Airports Authority of India (IAAI) was constituted in 1972 while the National Airports Authority was constituted in 1986. The Bureau of Civil Aviation Security was established in 1987 following the tragic crash of Air India Flight 182. Pushpaka Aviation operated scheduled international passenger flights from Bombay to Sharjah, as an associate carrier of Air India from 1979 to 1983.
East-West Airlines was the first national-level private airline to operate in the country after the government de-regularised the civil aviation sector in 1991. The government allowed private airlines to operate charter and non-scheduled services under the 'Air Taxi' Scheme until 1994, when the Air Corporation Act was repealed and private airlines could now operate scheduled services. Private airlines like Air Sahara, Modiluft, Damania Airways and NEPC Airlines among others commenced domestic operations during this period.
Air India placed orders for more than 68 jets from Boeing for US$7.5 billion in 2006 while Indian placed orders for 43 jets from Airbus for US$2.5 billion in 2005. IndiGo announced orders for 100 Airbus A320s worth US$6 billion during the Paris Air Show, the highest by any Asian domestic carrier. Kingfisher Airlines became the first Indian air carrier on 15 June 2005 to order Airbus A380 aircraft worth US$3 billion.
More than half a dozen low-cost carriers entered the Indian market in 2004–05. Major new entrants included Air Deccan, Air Sahara, Kingfisher Airlines, SpiceJet, GoAir, Paramount Airways and IndiGo. But Indian aviation industry struggled due to economic slowdown, rising fuel and operation costs. This led to consolidation, buy outs and discontinuations in the Indian airline industry. In 2007, Air Sahara and Air Deccan were acquired by Jet Airways and Kingfisher Airlines respectively. Paramount Airways ceased operations in 2010 and Kingfisher shut down in 2012. AirAsia India, a low-cost carrier operating as a joint venture between Air Asia and Tata Sons launched in 2014. Vistara, another carrier was established as a joint venture between Tata Sons and Singapore Airlines. As of 2013–14, only IndiGo and GoAir were generating profits.
India is the world's third-largest civil aviation market (c. January 2018). It recorded air traffic of 131 million passengers in 2016, of which 100 million were domestic passengers. The market is also estimated to have 800 aircraft by 2020.
In 2015, Boeing projected India's demand for aircraft to touch 1,740, valued at $240 billion, over the next 20 years in India. This would account for 4.3 per cent of global volumes. According to Airbus, India will be one of the top three aviation markets globally in the next 20 years. Airbus is expecting an annual growth rate of over 11 per cent for the domestic market in India over the next ten years, while the combined growth rate for domestic and international routes would also be more than 10 per cent.
To increase the number of operational airports, number of operational airports with scheduled flights, number of routes, number of flyers and to reduce the cost of flying, the Government of India launched UDAN-RCS scheme from 2016, which increased number of operational airports from 49 to 70 within first round that was awarded in April 2017, several more rounds were awarded in Dec 2017, and many more rounds are planned later in 2018 and 2019 with number of operational airports expected to go to 150 or even more.
With a view to aid in modernization of the existing airports to establish a high standard and help ease the pressure on the existing airports, 100% FDI under automatic route has now been allowed in Brownfield Airport projects. This move would also serve in further developing the domestic aviation infrastructure. Further, FDI limit for Scheduled Air Transport Service/ Domestic Scheduled Passenger Airline and regional Air Transport Service has been raised from 49% to 100%, with FDI up to 49% permitted under automatic route and FDI beyond 49% through Government approval. For Non-Resident Indians (NRI's), 100% FDI will continue to be allowed under automatic route. However, foreign airlines would continue to be allowed to invest in capital of Indian companies operating scheduled and non-scheduled air transport services up to the limit of 49% of their paid up capital and subject to the laid down conditions in the existing policy. Increasing the FDI limit for these aviation services shall not only encourage competition by lowering prices but shall also accord choice to consumers.
The civil aviation sector in India, which till now was dependent on foreign countries for maintenance, repair and overhaul (MRO) services, is planning to have indigenous facilities. The Government of India is planning to develop a sustainable air network in over 400 tier-2 cities across India with an estimated expenditure of ₹500 million (US$7.0 million).
The Ministry of Civil Aviation released a report entitled "Vision 2040" on 15 January 2019 outlining a roadmap for the future of civil aviation in India. The report projects that air passenger traffic will increase sixfold to 1.1 billion by 2040 including 821 million domestic and 303 million international passengers. The report estimates that a total of 2,359 aircraft would be required to server passengers in March 2040. The government expects air cargo movement to quadruple to 17 million tons in 2040. The Ministry projected that the number of airport in India would rise from 101 in January 2019 to around 190–200 by March 2040 and an estimated 150,000 acres of land and US$40–50 billion of capital would be required for construction. The government proposed creating a $2 billion fund to help support low-traffic airports. The report also targets establishing an aircraft manufacturing base in India by 2040.
The industry is governed by the provisions of Aircraft Act. According to the '5/20 rule,’ all airlines in India need five years of domestic flying experience and at least 20 aircraft in its fleet in order to fly abroad. The proposal to review or scrap the 5/20 rule had come up during the tenure of former aviation minister Ajit Singh and around the same time when Tata Group evinced interest in investing in airline sector.
Regulations requiring hand baggage tags to be stamped by security personnel at all airports was introduced from 1992. Between 15–21 December 2016, the CISF conducted a week-long trial at 6 airports during which all domestic passengers would be exempted from the stamping requirement. Civil aviation security regulator Bureau of Civil Aviation Security (BCAS) announced on 23 February 2017, that stamping baggage tags was no longer required at seven airports – Delhi, Mumbai, Kolkata, Bengaluru, Hyderabad, Ahmedabad and Cochin. The Ministry of Civil Aviation intends to gradually eliminate the requirement from all airports.
National Civil Aviation Policy 2016
The Government of India released the National Civil Aviation Policy on 15 June 2016. The NCAP 2016 covers the broad policy areas, such as Regional connectivity, Safety, Air Transport Operations, 5/20 Requirement for International Operations, Bilateral traffic rights, Fiscal Support, Maintenance, Repair and Overhaul, Air-cargo, Aeronautical 'Make in India'. The broad key features of the NCAP are :
- VGF for operation under Regional Connectivity Scheme (RCS).
- Revival of un-served or under-served routes under RCS.
- Introduction of a new Category 'Schedule Commuter Operator' under Commercial Air Transport Operations.
- Rationalization of Category-I routes under Route Dispersal Guidelines (RDGs) on the basis of criteria given in NCAP 2016.
- The requirement of five years and 20 aircraft for international operation has been modified to 0 years and 20 aircraft or 20% of the total capacity (in terms of average number of seats on all departure put together) whichever is higher for domestic operations.
- Liberalization of domestic code share points in India within the framework of ASA.
India's aviation regulator, the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA), and United States Technical Development Agency (USTDA) signed the Grant Agreement for India Aviation Safety Technical Assistance Phase II on 9 February 2016. Under the agreement, USTDA will partially fund improving systems at the DGCA. While USTDA's assistance will be of $808,327, contractor firm The Wicks Group (TWG) would share the cost of assistance at $75,000.
The security of Indian airports is ensured by the Central Industrial Security Force (CISF). Three Indian aircraft have been hijacked: 1971 Indian Airlines hijacking (1971), Indian Airlines Flight 427 (1993) and Indian Airlines Flight 814 (1999).
Social and environmental responsibility
Travel by air has significant environmental impacts. Construction of new airports may require land acquisition, and can be mired in controversies, as happened in the case of the Aranmula International Airport.
As of October 2016, India is not a signatory to the UN supported 'Carbon Offsetting and Reduction Scheme for International Aviation' (CORSIA). 66 countries contributing more than 85% of international aviation activity has decided to voluntarily participate in this mechanism from the introductory phase itself.
Ministry of Civil Aviation
The Ministry of Civil Aviation (MoCA) of Government of India is the nodal Ministry responsible for the formulation of national policies and programmes for development and regulation of civilian aviation, and for devising and implementing schemes for the orderly growth and expansion of civilian air transport. Its functions extend to overseeing airport facilities, air traffic services and carriage of passengers and goods by air. The Ministry also administers implementation of the 1934 Aircraft Act and is administratively responsible for the Commission of Railways Safety.
The ministry also controls aviation related autonomous organisations like the Airports Authority of India (AAI), Bureau of Civil Aviation Security (BCAS), Indira Gandhi Rashtriya Uran Akademi and Public Sector Undertakings including Air India, Pawan Hans Helicopters Limited and Hindustan Aeronautics Limited.
The Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) is the national regulatory body for civil aviation under the Ministry of Civil Aviation. This directorate investigates aviation accidents and incidents. The government of India is planning to replace the organisation with a Civil Aviation Authority (CAA), modelled on the lines of the American Federal Aviation Administration (FAA).
Airports Authority of India
AAI's implementation of Automatic Dependence Surveillance System (ADSS), using indigenous technology at Kolkata and Chennai Air Traffic Control Centres, made India the first country to use this technology in the Southeast Asian region, thus enabling air traffic control over oceanic areas using a satellite mode of communication. Performance-based navigation (PBN) procedures have already been implemented at Mumbai, Delhi and Ahmedabad Airports, and are likely to be implemented at other airports in a phased manner. AAI is implementing the GAGAN project in technological collaboration with the Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO), where the satellite-based system will be used for navigation. The navigation signals thus received from the GPS will be augmented to meet the navigational requirements of aircraft.
AAI has four training establishments: the Civil Aviation Training College (CATC) at Allahabad; the National Institute of Aviation Management and Research (NIAMAR) at Delhi; and the Fire Training Centres (FTC) at Delhi and Kolkata. An Aerodrome Visual Simulator (AVS) has been provided at CATC, and non-radar procedural ATC simulator equipment is being supplied to CATC Allahabad and Hyderabad Airport. AAI has a dedicated Flight Inspection Unit (FIU) with a fleet of three aircraft fitted with flight inspection systems to inspect Instrument Landing Systems up to Cat-III, VORs, DMEs, NDBs, VGSI (PAPI, VASI) and RADAR (ASR/MSSR). In addition to in-house flight calibration of its navigational aids, AAI undertakes flight calibration of navigational aids for the Indian Air Force, Indian Navy, Indian Coast Guard and other private airfields in the country.
Civil Aviation Parks
Several Integrated Aviation-industrial parks, for aerospace training, research, manufacturing, Maintenance, repair, and operations (MRO) and Fixed-base Operations (FBO) integrated international aviation hub and aerospace industrial hub, are in the process of being setup, such as in Hisar and Gujarat.
While there are 346 civilian airfields in India – 253 with paved runways and 93 with unpaved runways, only 132 were classified as "airports" as of November 2014. Of these, the airports in Delhi, Mumbai, Chennai, Bangalore, Kolkata, Hyderabad, Kochi, Ahmedabad, Jaipur and Pune handle most of the traffic. The operations of the major airports in India have been privatised over the past five years and this has resulted in better equipped and cleaner airports. The terminals have either been refurbished or expanded.
India also has 33 "ghost airports," which were built in an effort to make air travel more accessible for those in remote regions but are now non-operational due to a lack of demand. The Jaisalmer Airport in Rajasthan, for example, was completed in 2013 and was expected to host 300,000 passengers a year but has not seen any commercial flights take off till 2017,After UDAN – RCS scheme Jaisalmer Airport get its first commercial flight to Delhi and till now there are around 5 destination connected through jaisalmer.
|Length of runways||Airports
|3,047 m (10,000 ft) or more||21||1|
|2,438 to 3,047 m (8,000 to 10,000 ft)||59||3|
|1,524 to 2,438 m (5,000 to 8,000 ft)||76||6|
|914 to 1,524 m (3,000 to 5,000 ft)||82||38|
|Under 914 m (3,000 ft)||14||45|
Pawan Hans Helicopters Limited is a public sector company that provides helicopter services to ONGC to its off-shore locations, and also to various State Governments in India, particularly in North-east India.
There are a total of 22 airlines which are operational in India as of 2015.
- "In next 6–8 months, we expect to get bids for Air India: Jayant Sinha", Economic Times, 8 January 2018.
- Sorry for the inconvenience. Archived 27 August 2012 at the Wayback Machine
- "Fleet Details". Official webpage of Air India. Archived from the original on 23 April 2009. Retrieved 11 June 2009.
- Gupta, Surajeet Das (23 January 2018). "With nearly 47,500 flights, Mumbai-Delhi is world's third busiest air route". Business Standard India.
- "Notebandi fails to impact international travel – Times of India". The Times of India. Retrieved 22 February 2017.
- "PIB English Features". PIB.nic.in. Retrieved 9 January 2018.
-  Beginning of Aviation in India – Bharat Rakshak Archived 27 February 2012 at the Wayback Machine
- "Boeing Gets 68 Plane Order from Air-India". Fox News. 11 January 2006. Retrieved 11 June 2009.
- "Airbus wins $2.2bn Indian order". BBC. 7 September 2005. Retrieved 11 June 2009.
- "New Indian Airline Orders 100 Airbus Jets for $6B". Fox News. 15 June 2005. Retrieved 11 June 2009.
- "Kingfisher Air nets monster jumbo". Online edition of the Financial Express, dated 14 June 2005. Archived from the original on 14 May 2013. Retrieved 11 June 2009.
- "High fives with $3bn Kingfisher order". Flightglobal.com. 16 June 2005. Archived from the original on 2 January 2013. Retrieved 11 June 2009.
- Our Bureau. "GoAir sees profit for second year in a row". The Hindu Business Line.
- Shukla, Tarun (11 April 2017). "India climbs to fourth spot in 2016 global air traffic rankings". Mint. Retrieved 5 May 2017.
- Aviation, Make in India
- India emerging biggest aircraft market
- "GoI AAI's RCS UDAN document (final version), October 2016" (PDF). AAI.aero. Archived from the original (PDF) on 6 June 2017. Retrieved 9 January 2018.
- "Ude Desh Ka Aam Naagrik : Civil Aviation Ministry's Regional Connectivity Scheme "UDAN" Launched Today". Press Information Bureau. Government of India. 21 October 2016.
- Shukla, Tarun (6 March 2017). "Govt clears Rs4,500 crore for 50 regional airports under Udan scheme". LiveMint.com. Retrieved 9 January 2018.
- "UDAN: Govt links airlines' performance to award of more routes.", Economic Times, 14 November 2017.
- "Udan scheme round-II: Government receives 141 proposals for air routes.", Zee Business, 14 November 2017.
- Regional Connectivity Scheme – UDAN (PDF) (Report). Ministry of Civil Aviation – Government of India. October 2016. Archived from the original (PDF) on 6 June 2017. Retrieved 31 March 2017.
- "Civil Aviation Ministry to Give a Boost to Indigenous MRO Services", The New Indian Express, 3 February 2016
- "Air connectivity for tier-2 cities soon, says MoS Civil Aviation Mahesh Sharma", India Today, 9 February 2016[permanent dead link]
- Chong, Aaron (15 January 2019). "Indian government draws up new civil aviation roadmap to 2040". Flightglobal.com. Retrieved 21 January 2019.
- "Indian air traffic to cross 1 bn footfalls by 2040: Ministry of Civil Aviation". The New Indian Express. Retrieved 21 January 2019.
- "GoAir, IndiGo, AirAsia increase baggage fee", The Hindu, 22 July 2016
- "Centre has powers to fix excess baggage rates: DGCA to Delhi HC", Live Mint, 13 July 2016
- "Raju questions 5/20 rule", The Hindu, 23 January 2016
- "Civil Aviation Ministry 'Tweaking' International Flying Norms?", The New Indian Express, 19 January 2016
- Jha, Somesh. "At 4 airports, handbags to go tag-free". The Hindu. Retrieved 23 February 2017.
- "No security tags required for cabin bags at six Indian airports from Dec 15". Hindustan Times. 14 December 2016. Retrieved 23 February 2017.
- "You no longer need a security stamp on your hand baggage tag at these 7 airports". hindustantimes.com. 23 February 2017. Retrieved 23 February 2017.
- "No stamping of hand bags at seven airports – Times of India". The Times of India. Retrieved 23 February 2017.
- "US agency to fund India's aviation safety upgrade", Business Standard, New Delhi, 9 February 2016
- "Airport security: A safety check for better co-ordination", The Indian Express, 10 February 2016
- "CIAL". CIAL.aero. Retrieved 9 January 2018.
- "The news and events page on the website has a list of upcoming and previous events along with the media release, which is in a categorized manner since 2010". www.NewDelhiAirport.in. Retrieved 9 January 2018.
- "Historic agreement reached to mitigate international aviation emissions". www.ICAO.int. Retrieved 9 January 2018.
- http://www.teriin.org/files/press-release-Chandigarh-terminal-GRIHA-rating.pdf[permanent dead link]
- "NBM Media". www.NBMCW.com. Retrieved 9 January 2018.
-  Archived 30 December 2012 at the Wayback Machine
- Pilot's checklist (PDF)[dead link]
- "Aviation Ministry moots to replace DGCA with a Super-regulator". India Today. 10 October 2012. Retrieved 7 May 2013.
- Vijay Mohan. Army’s helicopter repair hub likely to come up in Hisar, The Tribune, 1 August 2016.
- Haryana to develop international airport at Hisar, TravelBizMonitor, Retrieved in March 2016.
- State shelves Hisar airport cargo project, The Tribune, 29 May 2015.
- "Gujarat to set up India's first civil aviation park", International Business Times, 8 February 2016
- "CIA —The World Factbook – India". Central Intelligence Agency. 2008. Retrieved 10 April 2009.
-  Archived 27 December 2014 at the Wayback Machine
- "Modi's bumbling aviation boom". The Economist. 21 September 2015.
- Nick Easen CNN Hong Kong (17 September 2003). "Siachen: The world's highest cold war". CNN. Retrieved 30 March 2009.
- "Civil Aviation". Government of India Portal. Archived from the original on 8 May 2009. Retrieved 3 June 2009.