Govt may relax rules on cellphones use in aircraft

This will be made possible only after a new rule, aimed at relaxing the present procedures a bit, is adopted by the government. Currently, mobile phones can be used only when the doors of an aircraft are open, either before take-off or after landing and parking.

Pilot’s permission

Under this draft rule, a pilot can permit the use of mobile phones inside the aircraft after it has “landed and cleared the active runway”, that is before it has parked and the doors have been opened.

But the new rule makes it clear that a pilot would not permit the use of cellphones if “the landing takes place in low visibility conditions”.

The new rule also makes it clear that “an aircraft shall be deemed to be in flight when all its external doors are closed following embarkation until the moment when any such door is opened for disembarkation”.

The government has sought objections or suggestions from the public on this draft rule by the middle of August. Once the rule is adopted, it would form part of the Aircraft Rules of 1937, which govern the entire gamut of the civil aviation procedures in the country.

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