High air fares in focus as DGCA seeks data from airlines

As concerns mount over rise in airfares during peak seasons and crisis situations, aviation regulator DGCA has asked airlines to provide details on the number of tickets sold in the highest fare bracket and share of revenue earned from this on 20 identified routes.
“We have identified 20 routes across Tier-I, Tier-II and Tier-III cities for the purpose of making the perspective clear on how many seats are being sold,” a DGCA official said.

The regulator has sought details of the tickets sold in the highest fare bucket and the revenue share from such sale, the official said, adding this will be made a monthly exercise.
The DGCA has identified routes like Mumbai-Srinagar, Kolkata-Guwahati, Kolkata-Port Blair, Delhi-Srinagar, Delhi-Leh, Delhi-Dehradun, Delhi-Patna, Delhi-Mumbai, Bangalore-Delhi, Delhi-Hyderabad and Mumbai-Hyderabad for this purpose.
DGCA plans to publish these numbers in its monthly traffic data from next month, the official said.
As it seeks to clamp down on airlines charging exorbitant ticket prices, the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) has also asked them to submit specific information about the number of seats and relevant fares on 20 identified routes, the official said.
On Wednesday, Civil Aviation Minister Ashok Gajapathi Raju told the Lok Sabha that the Ministry would hold consultations with the airlines to explore the possibility of curbing the menace of charging exorbitant airfares during emergency situations.
“The Ministry will commence the process of consultations with stakeholders, including airlines, to explore possibilities … of containing fares,” he had said.
His assurance came after Lok Sabha members voiced concerns over exorbitant airfares during emergency situations like unprecedented floods in Chennai and Srinagar and the recent Jat agitation.
Domestic airlines had jacked up their fares multifold for flights landing and departing from the airports closer to Chennai in the wake of heavy floods last December. Air fares on the Chandigarh-Delhi sector also hit the sky during the Jat agitation.