Parliamentary panel objects to airport code GAY for Gaya

It suggests “YAG” as an alternative

Updated - February 06, 2022 09:48 pm IST

Published - February 06, 2022 09:47 pm IST - NEW DELHI:

Passengers arrive in Gaya. Photo used for representation purpose only. File

Passengers arrive in Gaya. Photo used for representation purpose only. File

The code name "GAY" for the airport at Gaya is "offensive, embarrassing and inappropriate" and the government must make all efforts to get it changed, a Parliamentary panel has said in its report.

The Committee on Public Undertakings in its first report tabled in Parliament in January 2021 recommended changing the code name for Gaya airport, assigned by global trade body International Air Transport Association (IATA). It suggested that a more "appropriate" code like "YAG" may be assigned.

"The Committee have their apprehension that Gaya being a holy city, locals might be finding it offensive or embarrassing on their city being recognised in the international community with the code name 'GAY'. The Committee too finds it inappropriate and unsuitable," it had said. It asked the Government of India and Air India to complete "consultations and formalities in a time-bound manner" to get the name changed.

A report of the Committee tabled last week recorded the reply of the Ministry of Civil Aviation on the matter, which informed it about IATA's response. "IATA stated that location codes are considered permanent and cannot be changed without strong justification primarily concerning air safety," said the Ministry.

But the panel was not satisfied with the response and urged the government to continue to pursue the matter with IATA.

The IATA assigns a two-character code name for airlines and a three-character code for airports for easy identification. These are also fundamental to the smooth running of hundreds of electronic applications.

The three-letter code, seen on a ticket or on display screens at airports, are determined by first ensuring that it is unique and not in use by any other airport. These are assigned based on the name of the airport or the name of the city or any other relevant identifier.

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