Aviation Minister Hardeep Singh Puri inaugurated a new Air Traffic Control (ATC) tower for Delhi international airport and later stressed that besides having the latest technology and equipment it is equally important that expert people man such apparatus. Compared to the old ATC tower, the new one has an additional 21 Controller Positions at level 26 and 12, and Ground Controller Positions at level 25. The total cost of establishing the tower and its facilities were more than Rs 350 crore, Airports Authority of India (AAI) Chairman Anuj Agrawal said.
"ATC automated systems installed in technical blocks will have additional ATC controller positions, and this will return in the reduction in the number of flights handled by a single controller enhancing their efficiency and the overall security," he said. The new tower is capable of handling more than 1,200 flights per day, and it has a peak hour handling capacity of 75 flights, he added. The AAI said in a statement, "These positions enable the new ATC Tower to be future-ready for the big expansion planned at the Delhi airport, which includes a fourth runway and many new parking stands/taxiways, which will enable additional capacity and slots for the airline industry."
Post-inauguration, the Union minister said in his speech, "At the end of the day, it is the discipline, training and expertise of the person behind the machine who will ensure that when the number of planes in the sky increases... it is the organisational teamwork, individual discipline and training that will keep our skies safe and ensure security for our consumers." "I am glad that we are making this quantum leap in terms of technology and aviation security today," he added.