Aviation policy to be announced next year: Ashok Gajapathi Raju


Hyderabad: Civil Aviation Minister Ashok Gajapathi Raju earlier today announced the launch of the much awaited aviation policy. He said that the policy is in its final stage of preparation and will be announced early next year after it is put up before the cabinet.

The minister was launching the e-boarding facility at Hyderabad airport earlier today. Speaking to the press, he noted that the ministry had received more than three lakh suggestions to draft the aviation policy. He said that the process of evaluating the suggestions and considering them was at the final stage. Ashok Gajapathi said that he always opposed the 5/20 norm, which stipulates a minimum five years of operations and a fleet of 20 aircraft for overseas flying rights.

“I have always been opposed to this kind of thinking. I will take up this with Cabinet so that we can do away with it at the earliest,” he said.

After the successful implementation of the pilot project, Rajiv Gandhi International Airport (RGIA), Hyderabad became the first airport in India to go live on e-boarding for all domestic passengers. At the press conference, the minister said that Hyderabad and Bengaluru airports implemented e-boarding facility on pilot basis and suggested that it be introduced at all airports in a phased manner to provide greater convenience to the passengers.

On development of new airports, the minister said that aviation is of utmost priority and the land for the airports have to be allotted by the states. He, however, made it clear that new airports would be taken up only if they were found feasible.

Amongst the new ideas implemented, the most recent one is the built in-house by GMR Hyderabad Airport Ltd. (GHIAL). The facility eliminates the need to manual stamping of boarding cards even for physical boarding cards issued by CUSS (Common Use Self Service) machines or the check-in counters. Further, it covers end-to-end all the key passenger processes at the airport, starting from entry to terminal and including check-in, security check, boarding gate and finally the boarding bridge check before entering the aircraft. Meanwhile, a domestic passenger flying from the airport will only need an mobile e-boarding card and his Aadhaar card number to gain entry into the airport.

“We have used our internal capabilities to commence full-fledged end-to-end E-boarding in shortest possible time. Our in-house built E-boarding solution is in line with the ‘Digital India’ programme,” said GHIAL CEO SGK Kishore