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Govt unveils rules for no-fly list of unruly passengers

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Emphasising the government’s commitment for ensuring safety, the Ministry of Civil Aviation has unveiled rules to tackle on-board disruptive and unruly behaviour by passengers.

Minister for Civil Aviation P Ashok Gajapathi Raju said, “The new rules will allow for the formation of a national, no-fly list of unruly passengers.”

The minister further added, “The promulgation of the no-fly list in India is unique and first-of-its-kind in the world. The list is based on the concern for safety of passengers, crew and the aircraft, and not just on security threat”

The Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) has revised the relevant sections of the Civil Aviation Requirement (CAR Section 3, Series M, Part Vl on “Handling of Unruly Passengers) to bring in a deterrent for passengers who engage in unruly behaviour on board aircrafts.

The revised CAR deals with unruly behavior of passenger on-board aircrafts. The revised CAR will be applicable for all Indian operators engaged in scheduled and non-scheduled air transport services, both domestic and international carriage of passengers. The CAR would also be applicable to foreign carriers subject to compliance of Tokyo Convention 1963.

The new rules have been promulgated after a lot of deliberation and consultation with all stakeholders. “The focus has been on ensuring on board safety while maintaining an element of balance and safeguarding the interest of passengers, cabin crew and the airlines,” said Jayant Sinha, Minister of State for Civil Aviation.

The revised CAR defines the following three categories of unruly behaviour:

Level 1 refers to behaviour that is verbally unruly, and calls for debarment upto 3 months;

Level 2 indicates physical unruliness and can lead to the passenger being debarred from flying for upto 6 months

Level 3 indicates life-threatening behaviour where the debarment would be for a minimum of 2 years.

The Ministry of Civil Aviation said the complaint of unruly behavior would need to be filed by the pilot-in-command. “The complaints will be probed by an internal committee to be set up by the airline,” the ministry said.

The revised CAR also contains appeal provisions against the ban.

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