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Sidhartha Roy, Hindustan Times
New Delhi, October 17, 2012
Air travel from Delhi and Mumbai is set to become cheaper as the government is planning to scrap the airport development fee (ADF) at these airports from January 1. Civil aviation minister Ajit Singh directed the Airports Authority of India to inject additional equity into Delhi International Airport Ltd (DIAL) and Mumbai International Airport Ltd (MIAL) so that the fee levied on passengers to meet the financial gap in developing and upgrading the airports could be scrapped.

Delhi and Mumbai airports may face gaps of Rs. 1,175 crore and Rs. 4,200 crore, respectively, if ADF is abolished.

At present, the fee that Delhi airport charges are Rs. 200 for domestic and Rs. 1,300 for international passengers. In Mumbai, domestic passengers pay Rs. 100 and international passengers Rs. 600. But the user development fee (UDF) that passengers have to pay for meeting revenue shortfall at these airports will stay.

The ministry, while asking AAI not to levy ADF at Chennai and Kolkata, directed the authority to infuse more equity into MIAL and DIAL and submit its proposals to the airports economic regulatory authority.

Singh also asked the AAI to contribute equity shares of about Rs. 102 crore in DIAL and Rs. 288 crore in MIAL.