Passengers told about flight delays by SMS or phone: Patel

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New Delhi, Mar 4 (UNI) Minister of State for Civil Aviation Praful Patel today said passengers of private airlines whose flights were delayed or cancelled were being informed through telephone or SMS.

Denying the charge that private airlines did not keep passengers informed about flight delays or cancellation, Mr Patel told the Rajya Sabha that domestic airlines had requested for contact phone or mobile number from passengers at the time of booking of tickets.

During the past three months, Jet Air had cancelled 224 flights in November, 181 in December and 165 in January 2008, while in the case of SpiceJet it was 60, 118 and 55 and for Go Air it stood at 69 flights, 93 and 71 flights respectively, Mr Patel said in a written reply in Rajya Sabha.

He further said in case the flights were delayed beyond two hours, private airlines were providing refreshments to the travellers.

Regarding sanctioning of new airport projects in Rajasthan and Uttar Pradesh, Mr Patel said 'in-principle' approvals had already been accorded for new airports at Navi Mumbai in Maharashtra, Mopa in Goa and Kannur in Kerala.

''A proposal of the UP Government to set up a greenfield airport at Jewar in Gautam Buddha Nagar district is under consideration,'' he told the members.

To a question about the status of the proposed dedicated airport express rail link from the existing Begumpet airport in Andhra Pradesh, the Minister said the proposal had been received from the state government and was under examination.

UNI SD SB BD1530

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