A bill to replace Director General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) by a new aviation regulatory body - the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) - is likely to be tabled in Parliament in the ongoing Budget Session.
The CAA would have a Chairperson, a Director General and 7-9 members, including five whole-time members. All of them would be appointed by the Centre on the recommendation of a Selection Committee headed by the Cabinet Secretary.
"We are preparing a Cabinet note on creating the CAA. We have sent a draft of the proposal to the Law Ministry. We hope we will be able to table the bill in the second half of this Budget Session itself," Civil Aviation Minister Ajit Singh had said earlier this week.
With full functional and financial autonomy, the proposed CAA would be able to recruit its own staff, decide on their pay structure and the powers to fix and collect fees for rendering services like safety oversight and surveillance of air navigation services, the minister had said.
Asked how much fee would the passenger pay, Singh said it would "not be a noticeable amount... just Rs 5 per ticket... As the number of passengers grows, the burden on them will come down."
"The CAA will be self-financing. It will have a separate fund that would finance its entire expenses. In addition, this fund will also get budgetary support," Singh had said, adding that the estimated cost of the Authority would be around Rs 112 crore.
Maintaining that passenger and freight traffic and aircraft movement have grown manifold in the past six years, Singh had said the strength of DGCA, which regulates all these activities, had gone up only in "a miniscule manner" primarily due to the "cumbersome" recruitment process under the Union Public Service Commission (UPSC).