Indian carriers can utilise services of foreign pilots only till 2010: DGCA

New Delhi: Faced with growing resentment amongst young Indian pilots, who are finding it difficult to get jobs even after spending considerable sums on earning their commercial pilot licences (CPL), the government has now decided to address their problems. It is learnt that the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) has now asked Indian carriers to use the services of foreign pilots "up to a time limit of four years or July 31, 2010, whichever is earlier."

The ministry has also made extension of employment for foreign pilots more difficult as the DGCA will now have to refer any such case to the ministry of civil aviation. The DGCA has apparently told airlines that when they decide to ask for continued utilisation of foreign pilots, they should justify their demand by showing how they could not fill posts for new aircraft from the domestic market despite their efforts in recruiting and training local pilots.

Of a total 5,500-odd pilots in the country, nearly 1,000 are foreigners.