Jammu & Kashmir

‘Predatory pricing’: KCCI expresses concern over steep rise in airfares

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A view of Srinagar Airport. [File Photo]

Srinagar: The Kashmir Chamber of Commerce and Industry has been expressing its grave concern over the uncertain exorbitant air fares which has been adversely affecting the tourist business of JK and the travel movement of sick, aged, students and businessmen.

The Department-related Parliamentary Standing Committee on Transport, Tourism and Culture, have taken the stock of situation emerging out of irrational mechanism adopted by some operators in league with some airlines manipulating the air fare, kCCI said in a statement.

“The KCCI hails the committee for making the appropriate recommendations, observation like: The  committee recommends that there should be a mechanism with the Ministry such as capping of upper and lower prices to stop the practice of ‘predatory pricing’ or the sudden surge in prices even though price buckets are being created as per international aviation norms, a close watch has to be maintained by the DGCA and the Ministry and a mechanism should be devised to monitor the websites of various airlines to prevent them from misguiding passengers.”

The panel said that in case private airlines do not publish the correct information regarding fares, they should be penalized for it.

“The Committee observes that the Ministry of Civil Aviation has a responsibility to the travelling public and the nation at large to ensure that predatory pricing mechanism are not adopted by the airlines under the cloak of free market economy. The committee recommends the ministry should formulate a pricing mechanism for air fares to ensure that passengers are not charged exorbitant prices,” the statement said.

KCCI would urge and earnestly request the Minister of Home Affairs, the GoI Minister for Civil Aviation and also the Director General, Civil Aviation to ensure implementation of the recommendation made by the said Department-related Committee in letter and spirit without fail and any further delay.

In the meantime, the airlines should operate additional flights to meet the tourist rush for visiting short lived Tulip garden. Furthermore, this is also the time for the return of local citizens, students and non resident Kashmiris, the statement added.

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