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Air India mulling setting up aviation university

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New Delhi: Government-owned Air India is mulling setting up of an aviation university to cater to the increasing demand for aviation courses particularly for pilots and cabin crew.

Air India already has a near-ready infrastructure and required faculty at its Centre Training Establishment (CTE) in Hyderabad, which can be converted into a full-fledged aviation university by upgrading the existing facility on minimum investment, airline sources told PTI.

Spread over 20 acres of land, the nearly 60-year old premium aviation training institute currently offers courses in all aspects of aviation including for pilots, cabin crew, engineers, aviation security and ground handling among others.

“The demand for aviation professionals in the country is rapidly growing but market is unable to cater to this demand as there are not many facilities, offering such courses under one roof.

“Moreover, most of courses offered by the existing institutes are generally basic training courses and not at the graduation or post-graduation level. We already have a set up at Hyderabad, which can be upgraded into a full-fledged university,” Air India sources said.

Air India has set-up a three-member committee to explore the prospects, they said, adding chairman and managing director Ashwani Lohani is very keen to see CTE converting into an aviation university.

Significantly, country’s first aviation academy, Rajiv Gandhi National Aviation University, is coming up at Fursat Gunj near Amethi in Uttar Pradesh.

“Air India being the oldest airline in the country has no dearth of experienced aviation professionals, whose services can be availed as faculty at the proposed university,” they said.

Moreover, most of the courses offered by CTE are approved by aviation regulatory agencies such as Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) of the US, European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) besides the domestic regulator, Directorate General of Civil Aviation, they said.

“Besides, meeting internal demand, the institute also caters to the external demand as we get professionals from the neighbouring countries for various type of courses.So we expect to attract a lot of students from the sub-continent, joining graduation and PG level courses at the proposed university,” the sources said.

CTE also offers courses in commercial management, aviation medicine, ramp handling besides some customised courses.

PTI