Air Traffic Controllers' Guild (India)


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Issues taken up with management - 2006



30 November 2006

The Chairman

Airports Authority of India

Rajiv Gandhi Bhawan

New Delhi

Restructuring of ATM Directorate


The aviation industry has witnessed a phenomenal boom in the last couple of years and is poised for a quantum leap in the near future. The Indian Aviation, has not only been neck to neck in growth with the global players, it is well placed to accelerate further and to beat the competition in growth rate, given the fact the markets are more virgin and the purchasing power of its middle and upper class population, which is greater in number than the entire population of developed nations, is on the rise. If procurement of aircraft on purchase and lease by new players and expansion of fleet of the current market leaders and followers is any pointer to growth, one can easily measure the optimism in the industry. However any optimism should be guarded and proper match of ground infrastructure and organizational development of the service providers to enhance capacity and productivity is expedient.

In the backdrop of the current dynamic situation a deep insight into the role of various players in the service industry should quickly be grasped and proper attention be paid in augmenting these services and reengineering their organizations based on their role play and their importance in realizing full potential of this promising growth.

Though no job is less important and no person is less important, it is a fact that a few agencies in the industry and their role in development should be keenly observed and appreciated. The role of Air Traffic Management, in the context of improved handling of the high density traffic, effective utilization of the airspace, provision of efficient services to the operators, capacity enhancement -  all leading to better aviation industry economics - needs extra focus. ATM is the CNS or the Central Nervous System of the aviation industry and there can be no two view points as long as the viewpoint is objective and not subjective.

The Big Question is whether the existing system is capable of providing improved, more efficient and effective service given the existing organizational setup?  If the logically inferable answer is ‘NO’, it will be prudent to consider the proposal to revamp the organization radically so as to produce the most desirable and outstanding results.

Presently the directorate is headed by one Executive Director who is responsible for planning, management and day to day ‘fire-fighting’ in the entire Indian airspace measuring more than 36 million square kilometers.  This is a huge responsibility which not only directly affects 70 percent revenues of the AAI but also is a major factor in building an international image of a modern nation as the first impression on a visiting tourist or business traveller.  These responsibilities are enumerated in Annex 1.  This tremendous responsibility cannot and should not be entrusted to one individual and as such it is imperative to create new posts of Executive Directors so that the functions are looked after properly. The success and failure of this directorate / profession affects the success and failure of the organization in a big way. The nominal changes to the existing system will not yield the long term benefits, which will consequently adversely affect the health of the aviation industry.

ATC Guild reiterates its view point that a sincere thought for revamping the Directorate must be given by the AAI management at the earliest. The annexed proposal is submitted for your kind consideration for creating four posts of Executive Directors in the ATM directorate (The details are given in the form of Annexure).

Best Regards,

D K Behera
General Secretary



Management positions and duties should be created and headed by ATS personnel of the rank of Executive Director as follows:

  1. Executive Director (Air Traffic Services) is responsible for the following functions:

  • establishing ATS policies, standards and procedures;

  • ensuring the efficient operation of ATC units in accordance with approved policies, standards and procedures;

  • maintaining discipline, efficiency and proper deportment of ATS personnel;

  • investigating complaints against and operational irregularities within the ATS;

  • collaborating in the investigation of accidents and breaches of air regulations and air navigation orders;

  • providing training programmes;

  • recommending changes in ATS;

  • ensuring close liaison with users of the ATS;

  • recommending required changes in personnel, equipment, communications, space and operating positions;

  • providing representation regarding the selection and promotion of personnel;

  • making recommendations regarding the evaluation, development and research of new systems and equipment;

  • preparing the annual ATS budget programme;

  • implementing approved programmes within the financial limits;

  • ensuring that adequate security measures are maintained at all ATC units.

  1. Executive Director (ATS Operations) is responsible for the following functions:

  • supervising and inspecting ATC units;
  • ensuring that all units operate in accordance with approved policies, standards and procedures;
  • Aerodrome licensing.
  • assisting in investigating complaints, incidents, accidents, and breaches of air regulations and air navigation orders;
  • resolving operational problems between regions and making recommendations concerning inter-unit problems, where required;
  • ensuring appropriate distribution of responsibility and workload to regions or units;
  • arranging for flight surveillance of ATS procedures, controller performance and the adequacy of air ground communications.
  1. Executive Director (Personnel & Training) is responsible for the following functions:

  • implementing all aspects of the ATC training programme;
  • co-ordinating the selection of personnel for training;
  • co-ordinating medical examination programmes and developing required procedures;
  • recommending action regarding employees who fail to acquire or to maintain the necessary proficiency;
  • evaluating progress and potential of trainees;
  • developing and revising training programmes to satisfy national requirements;
  • reviewing training aids and material required for training programmes;
  • conducting such liaison and familiarization with all regions or ATC units as is necessary to be thoroughly conversant with current requirements for training throughout the ATS branch;
  • co-ordinating with other branches as required;
  • where adopted as policy, arranging familiarization flights and inter-unit liaison visits.
  1. Executive Director (GNSS and ATS Technical Evaluation) is responsible for the following functions:
  • programming the provision of electronic communications and other ATC equipment;
  • evaluating new systems;
  • developing installation plans to ensure optimum use of equipment;
  • participating in the development of training programmes covering equipment utilization;
  • co-ordinating with the communications branch and other agencies regarding communications and equipment;
  • developing regional ATC space requirements, plans and layouts;
  • ensuring that adequate equipment and supplies are available to units;
  • checking the quality of performance and reliability of equipment in use in ATC units.
  • To prepare a national GNSS implementation plan in tune with global & regional plans
  • Coordinate training programmes
  • Monitor the quality and integrity of the services
  • Develop plan for R & D
  • Supervise designing of GNSS Approach procedures
  • Coordinate with international agencies engaged in GNSS implementation
  • Organise seminars and workshops
  • Develop plans for automation of ATC
  • Coordinate with agencies to decide on the appropriateness of equipment
  • Endeavour to develop indigenous systems for ATC automation
  • Study the Human Machine Interface (HMI) aspects of automation
  • Prepare procurement plans for automation equipment
  • Conduct site/factory acceptance tests on system
  • Prepare training plans for ATCOs on new equipments
  1. Executive Director (Air Space Planning and Air Safety) is responsible for the following functions:
  • organizing the ATS airspace and planning of associated procedures;
  • reviewing existing procedures;
  • planning the development and maintenance of airspace requirements;
  • recommending system improvements;
  • collecting, collating and disseminating statistical data
  • assisting in the preparation of agreements between ATC units and military ATC units and between national ATS and foreign Governments;
  • developing and maintaining effective relationships with other branches and divisions, other departments and agencies, civil aviation industry organizations and associations and users of the system;
  • supervising the financial resources of the division.
  • monitor target level of safety (TLS)
  • Study the safety aspect of systems to be used
  • Safety management system administration
  • Organize seminars and workshops
  • Generate safety culture among all employees of AAI

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