Draft Aircraft Security Rules, 2022 | 25 Nov 2022

Why in News?

The Ministry of Civil Aviation has notified the Draft Aircraft Security Rules, 2022.

What is the Background?

  • The Draft Aircraft Security Rules, 2022 will supersede Aircraft Security Rules, 2011 and were necessary after Parliament passed Aircraft Amendment Act, 2020 in September 2020, giving statutory powers to BCAS along with the Director General of Civil Aviation and Aircraft Accident Investigation Bureau.
  • These allow them to impose penalties which could only be imposed by courts earlier. The Act also raised the maximum penalty from RS 10 lakh to Rs 1 crore
  • The amendment in Parliament was required after the United Nation’s aviation watchdog, International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO), raised questions about the three regulators functioning without statutory powers.

What are the Rules?

  • Penalty and Suspension:
    • These rules will enable the Bureau of Civil Aviation Security (BCAS) to impose a fine of RS 50 lakh to RS 1 crore (depending on the size of the company) on airports and airlines if they fail to prepare and implement a security programme, or if they commence operations without seeking a security clearance.
      • The BCAS is an attached office of the Ministry of Civil Aviation (India). It is the regulatory authority for civil aviation security in India.
    • Individuals will also face penalties ranging from RS 1 lakh to Rs 25 lakh depending on the nature of offence.
    • The BCAS will also be able to suspend or cancel an entity’s airport security clearance and security programme.
  • Cyber Security:
    • In order to deal with cyber security threats, the rules also require each entity to protect its information and communication technology systems against unauthorized use and prohibit disclosure of sensitive aviation security information.
  • Private Security Agents:
    • The draft rules now authorize airports to engage private security agents instead of CISF (Central Industrial Security Force) personnel at “non-core areas” and assign security duties as per the recommendation of the National Civil Aviation Policy, 2016.

What is the International Civil Aviation Organisation?

  • ICAO is a United Nations (UN) specialized agency, established in 1944, which laid the foundation for the standards and procedures for peaceful global air navigation.
    • The Convention on International Civil Aviation was signed on 7th December 1944 in Chicago.
    • It established the core principles permitting international transport by air, and also led to the creation of the ICAO.
  • One of the objectives is to foster the planning and development of international air transport so as to ensure the safe and orderly growth of international civil aviation throughout the world.
  • India is among its 193 members.
  • It is headquartered in Montreal, Canada.

Source: TH