The launch of the Bengaluru International Airport Ltd (BIAL) has been postponed atleast four weeks, till April end, with the Airports Authority of India (AAI) informing the civil aviation ministry that it needed this time to train its personnel on new air traffic control equipment (ATC). This equipment is due to be installed at the BIAL only by 20 March and the AAI requires atleast four weeks to train and familiarise its personnel with their operation.
The AAI submitted a report on the status of the work related to CNS-ATM (communication, navigation and surveillance - air traffic management-communication) at BIAL to the aviation ministry pointing out that the equipment would be installed at the ATC only by 20 March, after which it needed four weeks for "on-job training" of its air traffic controllers.
The AAI's problem was been taken note of by the ministry. According to aviation secretary, Ashok Chawla, "The opening of the airport has been postponed due to issues relating to air traffic control and safety. A decision on the opening will be taken in the next few days."