In medical examinations before flights over three years, 122 pilots of Indian airlines were found to have drunk alcohol, the Lok Sabha (lower house of Parliament) was told on July 21, 2016.

Mumbai airport registered the most drunk pilots, 34, followed by Delhi (31), Kolkata (18), Chennai (10) and Bangalore (9). The list of 16 airports where Indian pilots were tested includes four foreign international airports—Bangkok, Prague, Istanbul and Sharjah.

Source: Lok Sabha; 2016 figures as on June 30, 2016.

The first half of 2016 registered 23 drunk pilots; 2015 saw the most drunk-pilot reports, 43, followed by 2013 (30) and 2014 (26).

In a previous reply on May 5, 2016, the Lok Sabha was told that 112 tested positive for alcohol. These data reported pilots by airline: Jet Airways reported the most, 33 of 112, followed by Indigo (25), Spice Jet (20), and Air India (19).

Source: Lok Sabha; 2016 figures as on April 4, 2016.

Before June 6, 2014, pilots were suspended for three months for the first violation and for five years after the second, minister of state for civil aviation minister, Jayant Sinha told the Lok Sabha this month. The punishment has now been eased with the second violation attracting a three-year suspension instead of five.

As many as 110 pilots of 122 suspended were first-time violators.

(Mallapur is an analyst with IndiaSpend.)

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