A total of 14 aircraft have been grounded by the Directorate General of Civil Aviation this year following surprise checks conducted as part of its oversight activity to ensure strict compliance of safety regulations.
Civil Aviation Minister Ashok Gajapathi Raju Pusapati said in Lok Sabha that the aircraft were grounded after DGCA conducted 55 surprise special surveillance drive till June.
"Safety is a prime concern. There is no compromise on safety and we are second to none in the world in the matter of aircraft security," he said during Question Hour.
DGCA carries out surprise checks to ensure strict compliance of safety regulations in aircraft. The Civil Aviation Minister said 2,394 surveillance audits and 20 regulatory audits have been planned under annual surveillance programme during 2014.
Interestingly, no aircraft was grounded between 2011 and 2013 despite 820 surprise checks of aircraft.
The Minister said a total of 277 foreign pilots are currently working in different aviation companies, including 121 in Jet Airways -- the highest among all airlines.
Replying to a supplementary, the Minister said government is making every effort to increase connectivity in all parts of the country.