Thursday, 10 March 2011
If you are considering going to India be very careful who you fly with especially if you intend to fly internally within the country. The rapid airline growth in India has apparently led to a pilot shortage but some have found their own way of solving the problem.
According to The Times of India this week Captain(sic) Parminder Kaur Gulati was arrested in Delhi after causing damage to an Airbus A320 at Goa while flying an IndiGo Airlines. IndiGo is one of the sub continent's burgeoning companies but passengers onboard one of their company's aircraft would have been shocked to know that the woman pilot at the controls of their aircraft was in fact flying on a fake licence. The rapid 'explosion' in air travel in India could have been for real and it is probably m ore luck than judgement that a major disaster had not occurred. Captain Gulati, aged 38, had flown for the airline as a co-pilot since 2007 but she had failed her examination on air navigation and not turned up to take her paper on radio aids and instruments - vital if you are in charge of any aircraft especially one as sophisticated as an Airbus. Gulati was reported to have landed aircraft badly 10-15 times although this was denied by her employer. But she should have known better than to forge her licence because she is the wife of Indian police officer. She was found to have forged a mark-sheet to show that she had passed her exams when in fact she hadn't. The Director General of Civil Aviation in India who is meant to regulate the industry discovered that Gulati's commercial pilot's licence issued in January 2009 had been based on fake examination results. Her case might just be the tip of the chapatti because the DGCA is believed to be investigating two other similar cases. One of these is said to be another IndiGo pilot who was suspended from flying on Sunday, the second is said to work for MDLR Airlines.
To think that I voted for Cameron. But I am now left doubting my sanity and it is starting to dawn on me that very few politicians have a clue about what they are doing. His threats of imposing a 'no fly zone' over Libya is starting to mirror what that former war-monger, Tony Blair did in Iraq.
By making all of these devastating cuts to our military capabilities, how can Cameron continue with the belief that Britain is a major military power capable of enforcing our will over other nations? It is time that we kept our dirty noses out of other people's battles more especially as we no longer have the muscle to back up our threats. Perhaps Cameron is starting to believe that he has been rather hasty in cutting our military's strength and prowess?
I doubt if any of us are enjoying the events that are unwinding in Libya and Cameron was sabre rattling when he appeared on the BBC One Show to tell the audience that "We have got to prepare for what we might have to do if he (Gaddafi) goes on brutalising his own people. I don't think we can stand aside and let that happen". Big words from a prime minister who has already committed to sacrificing our Armed Forces by sending out redundancy notices. It appears Cameron is attempting to rally other countries to his idea of preventing the bloodshed in Libya from continuing in much the same way as Blair had done over Iraq. We only need to look at that major blunder to see where this could all be heading. It is time that we started to mind our own business and stop committing what is left of our resources by poking our noses into the affairs of others. The main issue to consider here is that if Cameron enforces a no fly zone he will effectively be declaring war on Libya. Maybe he should concentrate his mind on the growing problems of our own country instead of thinking about committing our depleted troops to yet another potential theatre of war that we simply cannot afford.
And, if we do commit, what is he going to send? We haven't got much of an Air Force left and we could have even less if Gaddafi was to shoot down some of our remaining aircraft. We have already seen one major cock-up after Hague sent in the SAS on a mission that nobody appears to have quite understood and he can count himself lucky that we got our men back after they had been captured. The last thing Britain needs is to become embroiled in another war.