New Delhi: With airlines like Kingfisher and Air India in a state of financial meltdown and Kingfisher suspending services across the board alarm bells have begun to ring at the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA). The DGCA has said it is starting a detailed financial audit of all airlines from Friday and that carriers found to be seriously strained financially after this survey would not be allowed to expand their fleet till they satisfy financial safety norms for the existing fleet.
The DGCA also said the licenses of airlines may not be extended if it finds that their financial capacity has degraded to an extent that it would not be wise to allow them to fly passengers.
According to DGCA chief, Bharat Bhushan, "We will finalise the modalities of the detailed surveillance shortly and begin the process from Friday. The focus will be on the airlines' economic viability and safety."
The basic idea behind the financial audit is to keep a close watch on the fleets of the financially most strained airlines. A financially broke airline was unlikely to invest sufficient funds in keeping their fleets completely airworthy and safe by replacing or repairing parts.
With national carrier Air India afloat on government largesse and Kingfisher in a state of financial meltdown the DGCA now has to be alert to the possibility of thousands of passengers being left stranded across domestic and internal airports as some airline throws in the towel one fine morning.
Airlines like Air India and Kingfisher are, by now, chronic defaulters to their service providers as well as their staff.