New Delhi, Oct 23: Civil Aviation Minister Praful Patel on Thursday, Oct 23 denied the members' allegations and charges that his Ministry has announced a financial 'bailout' package for private airlines. Patel thought admitted that air traffic has slowed down for the first time in last four years.
Replying during the Question Hour in the Lok Sabha on the construction and developments of airports in the country, Mr Patel said neither his Ministry nor the Petroleum Ministry has handed over any cheque to the private airlines. "No cheque has been given to any airline, bailout is wrong and no loss to any oil company," he added.
"What we have announced is only an extension of their (airlines) credit period from 60 days to 90 days. This would enable the private airlines to adjust their losses to make them viable, " he said.
Mr Patel said the development works of Terminal buildings and Airside for the development and modernisation of 35 Non-metro Airports are being undertaken by Airports Authority of India (AAI).
Fuel prices may see a cut
However, fuel prices could see a cut. Speaking in Parliament, Oil Minister Murli Deora said a decision will be taken based on Friday"s OPEC meeting.
Crude prices have been consistently dropping, currently at a new 16-month low of $67 a barrel. Deora had earlier said oil companies will break even when crude prices fall to $61 a barrel.
“There is a fall in the international prices of crude and as on today the price has come to $61.47 bbl. We are trying our best and are watching the situation from some time. Then we will take a decision. We can assure the member that still this fall in the prices we are losing money in all four products: petrol, diesel, kerosene and domestic LPG. What is really coming in our way is the fall of the rupee versus dollar. Tomorrow, the OPEC countries will make their announcement on their future course of action, then we will take this action," he said.