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Favoritism for the foreign airlines, disregard for the domestic ones

Wednesday, October 21, 2009 (14:15:32) Tags: Aviation,airlines,India New Delhi: Indians are well-known travellers but this doesn't help our domestic airlines in any case. The government favours the foreign airlines and as a result the lion's share of seats are filled by overseas carriers while the Indian ones are left with a fraction. What is the reason behind this pro-foreign attitude? It has been decided in a cabinet meeting that those Indian carriers which have the experience of flying for 5 years and have fleet of at least 20 aircraft will be allowed to fly abroad. While Mihin Lanka (the two-year-old Lankan airline with only one plane) flies into various Indian destinations, Spicejet which started its run in 2005 and has 19 aircraft does not have the privilege of flying abroad. Even RAK Airways (another two-year airline from UAE with two planes) fly into Delhi, Mumbai and Chennai. However, noted carriers like, Indigo, Paramount and Go don't get such privilege. The net result is that the seat of foreign airlines has jumped up to 77.5 million from 22.8 seats per annum (between January 2004 and December 2008) with an increase of 239.5%. Only 3 Indian companies have the privileges to fly overseas and they include Air India, Jet Airways and Kingfisher. But they are in sheer financial trouble. The Indian aviation industry is anxious of the situation. So their main purpose should be to prevent the foreign airlines from reinforcing their hold on the Indian market.