New Delhi: As many as 42 people were killed in 32 air accidents in the country in the last three years, Lok Sabha was informed on Monday.
While the maximum number of 12 accidents occurred in 2011 which included the crash of a MI-172 helicopter in the Tawang helipad claiming 19 lives, there were eight incidents each in 2012 and 2013 and four so far this year, Minister of State for Civil Aviation Mahesh Sharma said in reply to a written question.
In reply to another question, he said there there has been a "decrease" in the number of emergency landings during 2014, though the numbers grew from 10 in 2011 to 17 in 2012, 51 in 2013 and 31 this year.
Delhi's IGI Airport was the "most critical" in terms of animal strike or bird-hit incidents, recording 142 of 558 such incidents across the country so far this year.
IGI was the only airport across the country that has registered over hundred incidents in the last two years, including 131 out of 640 occurrings in 2013, followed by 84 in Mumbai and 78 in Ahmedabad the same year.
This year so far, the Delhi airport has recorded 142 animal strike or bird-hit incidents followed by 62 in Kolkata and 60 in Mumbai,
DGCA has set up a team to inspect 18 critical airports for preventing wildlife hazards, of which audit of 11 airports have already been carried out, he said, adding that airfield environment management committees have been set up at every airport to take corrective action.
Regarding "huge amounts" spent on non-operational airports, Sharma said there were 31 such airports across the country, on seven of which almost Rs 18 crore has been spent this year itself.
He said development and upgradation of airports was undertaken by Airports Authority of India "from time to time depending upon traffic demand, commercial viability, socio- economic considerations, availability of land" and other issues.