The Mumbai airport witnessed 262 flights that were frequently delayed (delayed on more than 20 % of the times they were operated in a month) in May according data released by the civil aviation ministry on Tuesday.
Although the number of such delayed flights continues to remain high, the figure in May is third lowest in the past 14 months.
In April 2011, the ministry had asked the Mumbai airport operator to publish a list of the frequently delayed flights on its website so that passengers have the option to skip the airlines with a poor punctuality record. The move was also aimed to discipline airlines.
Ministry officials said that though the number of such flights was still high, the number of occasions they missed the scheduled take off or landing slot had come down. “Until a few months ago the list had several flights that were getting delayed on 100% of the times they were operated. But now that frequency of flights has halved,” said a senior civil aviation ministry official requesting anonymity.
Airport officials said that a meeting would be held among airline executives, air traffic managers and the officials from the Directorate General of Civil Aviation, next week, to prepare better for the monsoon season.
Ministry data shows that flight delays at Mumbai are worse during the monsoon months of June to September.
In May, budget carriers did remarkably well as compared full service airlines. Of the 104 departures featuring on the list, the low cost carriers (Indigo, GoAir, Jetlite and Spicejet) operated only 31 flights. Jet Airways operated the highest number of such delayed flights with 54 of its city-bound flights and 38 of its scheduled departures featuring on the list. The national carrier Air India followed it with 42 scheduled arrivals and 27 departures making it to the list.