CAAN suspends NAC Chairperson over unauthorized aircraft dispatch

Kathmandu: Civil Aviation Authority of Nepal (CAAN) has taken decisive action against Yuvraj Adhikari, the chairperson of Nepal Airlines Corporation (NAC), following an unauthorized dispatch of a wide-body aircraft for a critical maintenance check.

The suspension of Adhikari, along with several key personnel, stems from an incident where an NAC aircraft was sent for a C-check in Italy via Dubai without proper authorization. This move, revealed to breach established protocols, has sparked intense scrutiny, particularly as Nepal currently lacks direct flight connectivity to Italy.

In addition to Adhikari, CAAN has grounded Operations Manager and Captain Dipu Jwarchan, Captain Maheshman Dangol, and Raman Ghimire, alongside suspending CAMO Manager Gyan Bahadur Kunwar.

Last Friday, NAC’s decision to transport the aircraft to Italy via a Dubai-bound flight for a C-check has raised serious regulatory concerns. According to CAAN regulations, airlines holding an Air Operator Certificate (AOC) must secure explicit permission for major maintenance activities such as C-checks and overhauls.

CAAN emphasized that the Italian company engaged for the C-check lacked CAAN’s authorization, and crucial permissions were not obtained prior to dispatching the aircraft.

An internal investigative committee has been swiftly assembled by CAAN to delve deeper into the circumstances surrounding this unauthorized dispatch. Further actions are anticipated based on the findings and recommendations of this committee.