DGCA`s air safety wing chief shunted out

The charge of Bir Singh Rai, deputy director general (DDG) of the Directorate of Air Safety of DGCA, was given to Lalit Gupta.

New Delhi: A senior official of the country`s aviation regulator in charge of air safety has been shunted out on charges of complacency in handling crucial matters relating to accident prevention.

Bir Singh Rai, deputy director general (DDG) of the Directorate of Air Safety of DGCA, was removed from the post with immediate effect and his charge given to Lalit Gupta, another DDG of the Aircraft Engineering Directorate as an additional portfolio, official sources said here.

Rai was heading the air safety directorate since last year following the retirement of then Joint DG AK Chopra. No assignment has yet been given to Rai, they said.

His removal came after some inquiry reports into certain air accidents and incidents were found to be "misleading", taken off the website of the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) and revisions carried out, the sources said.

Several major and minor discrepancies were found in these reports finalised and approved by Rai, they claimed. Gupta, who has now taken charge, is understood to have started reviewing all inquiries going on currently and taking rectification measures if found necessary.

A meeting of airline executives is also being convened to review the actions taken by them on various aircraft-related incidents and accidents and the remedial measures adopted, the sources said.

Industry sources, however, pointed out that removal of an officer would not have much impact on safety standards due to a major shortage of experienced staff, particularly at the senior level, facing the DGCA.


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