Smelling that something is definitely fishy in the waters (rather ‘airs’) of Indian aviation when the flight tickets prices sky-rocketed this Diwali, the Standing Committee of the Parliament on Transport, Tourism and Culture has demanded a probe against the airlines. It is to be noted that probe has already been launched by the Director General of Civil Aviation earlier. But, this is for the first time that the matter has been singled out at the level of the Standing Committee of Parliament, signifying that the matter has been serious enough to be taken up at the level of Parliament.
The Standing Committee has even given the suggestion that the future price hikes by the airlines shall have the prior approval of the DGCA to check against the ‘unreasonableness” of the fares. It has even asked the DGCA to find the excess amounts charged by the airlines, suggesting that the DGCA shall be able to arrive at some figure to indicate the extent of exorbitant prices.
The Civil Aviation Ministry had earlier replied to the Standing Committee that DGCA is tasked with the role monitoring the functioning of airlines and ensures that the prices are displayed by the airlines. But, this reply does not seem to have satisfied the Committee which contends that the people looking for the air tickets are not satisfied with the extent of DGCA intervention in this matter.
It shall be noted that the Standing Committees of Parliament are all-party bodies which run continuously on certain specified subjects, even when the Parliament is not in session.