Calling a female friend in the cockpit cost dearly to two pilots, Air India dropped both of them from the roster

Air India took action against two pilots who flouted rules by inviting a female friend to the cockpit and off-rostered them. Just a month back, a pilot was suspended and fined Rs 30 lakh in such a case.

Jun 13, 2023 - 18:30
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Calling a female friend in the cockpit cost dearly to two pilots, Air India dropped both of them from the roster

A month after an Air India pilot was barred from flying for inviting his girlfriend into the cockpit, yet another such incident has come to the fore. In fact, the airline has now initiated action against two pilots for inviting a woman to the cockpit of a Delhi-Leh flight last week.
The Air India management took action against the pilot and co-pilot soon after receiving a complaint from the cabin crew regarding the entry of an unauthorized female passenger into the cockpit of AI-445 aircraft. A top Air India official said, "A female friend of an AI-445 pilot entered the cockpit without following the rules, and both the pilots have been grounded/off-roster by Air India."
Reacting to the incident, the Directorate of Civil Aviation (DGCA) said, "DGCA is aware of the issue and necessary action is being taken as per the procedures in this matter." However, there is no official response from Air India so far. "Air India has formed a committee to probe the matter in detail," said an official.
The Leh route is one of the toughest and most sensitive air routes in the country in terms of security and it is against the law to allow an unauthorized person in the cockpit of a commercial aircraft.
Aviation expert Vipul Saxena said, "Landing at Leh airport is one of the toughest operations across the country due to the high altitude mountainous terrain and is also sensitive due to the presence of bases of the country's defense forces. Leh operations require a very good health record, being inadequate for operations at Leh. Oxygen levels and because of this, only highly skilled pilots with good health records are deployed for Leh operations."
The DGCA recently suspended the license of an Air India pilot who welcomed his female friend into the cockpit of Air India flight AI-915 on the Dubai to Delhi route on February 27. The DGCA had also imposed a fine of Rs 30 lakh on the airline.

Muskan Kumawat Journalist & Writer