DGCA wants all Boeing 737 Max aircraft to be grounded before 4 pm today
New Delhi, Mar 13: The Directorate General of Civil Aviation or DGCA on Wednesday said that all Boeing 737 Max aircraft should be grounded before 4 pm. This is to cater to situations where aircraft are to fly back to India or go to maintenance facility for parking.
India joined late Tuesday a global ban on flying the Boeing 737 MAX plane after this week's crash of this aircraft type in the African skies, increasing the likelihood of a further rise in domestic fares that remain high due to unrelated flight cancellations by some carriers.
The ban comes a day after the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) had allowed the Boeing 737 MAX aircraft to fly under stricter conditions.
The DGCA had earlier issued additional safety guidelines for Indian airlines operating Boeing 7373 Max 8 aircraft, it has finally decided to ground the particular model immediately.
In India, SpiceJet and Jet Airways are the two airlines that operate the Boeing 737 Max 8 jets. SpiceJet has around 12 '737 Max 8' planes in its fleet, while Jet Airways has five. Both the flights have grounded its fleet due to financial issues.
SpiceJet on Wednesday cancelled 14 flights after the DGCA issued an order to ground all Boeing 737-MAX planes and banned the planes from the Indian airspace from 4pm onwards till further decision.
In a statement, SpiceJet said that it had already initiated grounding of its Max fleet.
The civil aviation ministry has called an emergency meeting of all the airlines at 4 pm to discuss the situation where the Boeing 737-MAX aircraft are to fly back to India or to go to the maintenance facility for parking.
On March 10, a 737 MAX 8 aircraft operated by Ethiopian Airlines crashed near Addis Ababa killing 157 people, including four Indians.
This was second such crash involving the 737 MAX 8 aircraft in less than five months.
On October 29 last year, 189 passengers and crew died when a Lion Air Boeing 737 Max 8 crashed into the Java Sea in Indonesia shortly after takeoff. M