- The fare bands within which the airlines have to operate have been extended up to 24th February 2021 by the Ministry of Civil Aviation
- Before the lockdown took over, Indian airlines used to facilitate over 2,500 flights daily
- The authorities had earlier stated that they would want airlines to operate up to 60% of pre-COVID flights till February-end
THoD Newsdesk, New Delhi: The government authorities are probably set to increase the tally of domestic flights to 70%-75% of the pre-pandemic levels, as the aviation industry will probably witness a surge in the number of passengers due to the festive season. The authorities had earlier stated that they would want airlines to operate up to 60% of pre-COVID flights till February-end but now, the range has gone up to 10%-15%. Before the lockdown took over, Indian airlines used to facilitate over 2,500 flights daily.
In a statement to the press, the ministry was quoted saying, “(The) Ministry of Civil Aviation is monitoring the traffic every day, and it is expected that the traffic would further pick up because of the festival season and as the passenger traffic increases, the upper cap would be revised to 70-75% of normal capacity in the coming days.”
When domestic aviation resumed their operation back in May 2020, airlines were allowed to fly up to 33% of the normal capacity, as per the summer 2020 schedule. During that time, the average daily traffic was about 30,000. This range was pushed forward to 45% w.e.f. June 26, 2020, and it was further revised to 60% on September 6, 2020. The government has further mentioned that they have increased the fare regulation norms for the domestic category, till 2021 February-end.
The official statement read, “The fare bands within which the airlines have to operate have been extended up to 24th February, 2021 by the Ministry of Civil Aviation. These fare bands came into force with effect from 21st May, 2020.” The officials have even added that the daily passenger traffic has reached to 2.05 lakhs, as of November 1, 2020. Scheduled international passenger flights are still at a halt since the pandemic hit the nation, although special flights are operating at the moment under the Vande Bharat Mission and air bubble pacts with various countries across the globe.