the-south-asian Life & Times          January - March 2010




 Editor's Note


 Cover Feature
PM's State-Visit to DC

 Sikhs - the proud face of India

 Manmohan Singh
 Marshal Arjan Singh
 Isher & Montek Ahluwalia
 Gen, JJ Singh 
 Dr. NS Kapany
 Khushwant Singh

Singh Twins
Maharaja Exhibition

From the Past

 Lahore of Yore


 Gul Panag

 Business & Industry

 India's Air Traffic Controllers

Living Heritage
ikh Regiment

Copenhagen Climate Summit

Climate Change Issues

50 years of climate change in Himalaya

 Face to Face
 My life as a diplomat - SJS Chhatwal

 Lahore of Yore

 Future Predictions

 Tarot Readings


Bill Moyers on Fundamentalism










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Air Traffic Controllers

– never the same day twice

- a SALT Feature

Photo copyright The South Asian Life & Times

They monitor air travel through invisible highways in the sky. Passengers’ lives depend on their swift and decisive instruction to the pilot. They must speak clearly and correctly, work in a team and be constantly on the alert. Safety is the priority. Air Traffic Control is high energy environment with zero margin for error – one of the most stressful jobs in the world. One moment of forgetfulness can mean disaster. But thankfully, dramas and emergencies are few and far between. Air traffic Controllers or ATCs are selected carefully and trained even more vigilantly.

All civilian air traffic controllers in India are trained and employed by the AAI (Airports Authority of India). The pay and benefits are excellent but the stress is high. Their Rating & Stress Allowances alone could vary from Rs. 10,000 to Rs. 50,000 per month depending on their seniority and place of posting.

There are about 1640 dedicated and well-trained ATCs, both men and women, in India. Every day they handle over 5,000 commercial flights to all airports within India, guiding them through criss-crossing highways in the sky, ensuring the safety of about half a million aviation passengers per day over Indian skies. A lot is at stake with every decision they make.

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