New Delhi | Jagran News Desk: The upper house of the Parliament, Rajya Sabha, on Tuesday passed the Aircraft Amendment Bill, 2020 moved by Union Civil Aviation Minister Hardeep Singh Puri. The bill was passed by voice vote in Rajya Sabha.

The Aircraft Amendment Bill, 2020 seeks to convert three regulatory bodies under the Civil Aviation Ministry including the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) into statutory bodies. 

The Aircraft (Amendment) Bill, 2020 also provides for keeping aircraft belonging to the country's armed forces outside the purview of the Aircraft Act, 1934. The Bill also proposes to increase the fine amount for violations of new rules from Rs 10 lakh to Rs 1 crore. 

“A lot is being made out about six airports. Mumbai & Delhi, 2 airports privatised in 2006, account for 33% of our traffic & earning. The six airports that were awarded in 2018 together account for only 9%”, HS Puri said during Aircraft (Amendment) Bill 2020.

“When Delhi and Mumbai airports were privatised in 2006, all subsequent efforts and privatisation contained a stipulation to the effect that prior experience was necessary so we fell into a trap of our making”, he added.

The Bill was earlier passed by the Lok Sabha in March this year, a week before the government announced the nation-wide lockdown to curb the spread of the coronavirus.  

Key Features of Aircraft Amendment Bill, 2020:

- The Bill will provide statutory status to regulatory institutions like the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA), the Bureau of Civil Aviation Security (BCAS) and the Aircraft Accident Investigation Bureau (AAIB).

- DGCA will carry out oversight and regulatory functions with respect to matters under the Bill.

- BCAS carries out regulatory oversight functions related to civil aviation security.

- AAIB carries out investigations related to aircraft accidents and incidents.

- The statutory status to these regulatory institutions would improve India’s aviation safety ranking as suggested by the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO).

- The Bill proposes to increase the fine amount for violations of rules from Rs10 lakh to Rs 1 crore for aviation industry players.

- Under the Bill, the central government may cancel the licences, certificates or approvals granted to a person under the Act if the person contravenes any provision of the Act.

- The Act exempted aircraft belonging to the naval, military, or air forces of the Union.

- The Bill expands this exemption to include aircraft belonging to any other armed forces other than these three.

Posted By: Talib Khan