DGCA instructed to rationalise tariffs of private airlines: Patel

Ahmedabad, Jan 9 (ANI): Union Civil Aviation Minister Praful Patel on Sunday said the Director General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) has been instructed to monitor and rationalise the tariffs of private airlines for the benefit of travellers.

"Through DGCA (Director General of Civil Aviation) and our ministry, we have asked all the airlines and we have also not hesitated to investigate those airlines (who are flouting prescribed norms vis-'-vis fares)," said Patel on the sidelines of a function here.

"The result was that the sky-rocketing airfares have been stabilised and we have through DGCA set up a tariff monitoring unit and we want that the fares should be such that travellers can afford flying," he added.

Patel had on December 4, 2010, assured the nation that airfares would soon stabilise and rejected a proposal by domestic airlines for a massive hike in airfares.

He said the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) was not just a technical regulatory body, but could also take necessary measures to control sudden price hikes.

"Of course, the DGCA has many powers under Rule 135. It also has a much larger role than just being a technical regulator, and I do not see any reason why if airlines do not fall in line, the DGCA will not be a mute spectator. The DGCA will take necessary action, corrective action," said Patel.

Praful Patel earlier today unveiled an 18 feet high statue of Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel, after whom the International Airport at Ahmedabad is named.

Earlier on December 27, commenting on the issue of recent price hikes in airfares, Patel said: "With the intervention of the government, the situation is under control."

Patel had earlier said that his ministry would appoint an economic advisory council to advise the DGCA on all issues relating to economic regulations, including airfare, which would be headed by the Civil Aviation Secretary, Nasim Zaidi. (ANI)

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