Bhubaneswar: Steps will be taken to open more flying schools to meet the shortage of commercial pilots in India, said Union civil aviation minister Ashok Gajapathi Raju on the sidelines of Parliamentary Consultative Committee on Civil Aviation Security here on Friday.
According to sources, there is a shortage of more than 1,000 commercial pilots in the country. To meet the shortage, the airlines are compelled to hire expat pilots by paying around 60% more than what the Indian pilots get.
“If Odisha government evinces interest, one such school would also be opened here. As aviation sector is booming with more airlines foraying into both domestic and international operations, we need flying institutes so that we are able to produce quality pilots,” said the minister.
The only flying institute run by the Centre is Indira Gandhi Rashtriya Udan Academy in UP. The other 32 flying schools are owned by state governments. There are also 12 private flying institutes in the country. “If the Odisha government will come up with a proposal and provide the required infrastructure, we will set up an institute to train commercial pilots,” he said.