The Director General of Civil Aviation has come out with new detailed guidelines for the physically challenged travelling by air, making it clear that no airline can refuse to fly them.
Officials in the Aviation Ministry said under the new norms, airlines and airports have been asked to provide the required facilities and assistance to meet the needs of the disabled and make them public through their websites within three months. The new rules make it compulsory for the airlines and airports to impart necessary training to their staff to assist such passengers.
The airlines have been asked to make provisions for guide dogs accompanying persons with disabilities, provided they were trained, harnessed and vaccinated.
In the recently notified Civil Aviation Requirement, aviation regulator DGCA also asked airlines not to insist on medical certificates or special forms from persons who wish to travel without an escort. Such certificates should be sought only when the traveller has some disease or there is a possibility of his or her medical condition aggravating during the flight. “No airline shall refuse to carry persons with disability or reduced mobility and their assisting aids/devices, escorts and guide dogs, including their presence in the cabin, provided such persons or their representatives, at the time of booking, inform the airline of their needs,” it said.