'Reports have no proven basis': Aviation ministry on high Delhi-London fare
The Union civil aviation ministry said late on Sunday that it has "thoroughly checked" the claims made about the exorbitant airfare being charged in Delhi0London route and found that the reports have no proven basis. The ministry's statement on Twitter came after the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) asked the airlines that operate India-UK flights currently to submit details about their fares.
"There are media reports claiming India-UK one-way economy class fares have touched Rs. 4 lakhs. These reports have no proven basis. The veracity of Sh Sanjeev Gupta’s claim has been thoroughly checked by @DGCAIndia," the ministry said.
"The fares offered on the Delhi-London sector (Economy class) range from 1.03-1.21 lakhs for Indian carriers and 1.28-1.47 lakhs for UK carriers for travel during August 2021," it added in a subsequent tweet.
The issue came to light after Sanjeev Gupta, secretary at the ministry of home affairs, on Saturday raised concern about the high prices during college admission time.
“Fare of ₹3.95 lakh one way Delhi to London on Aug 26. No, it's not 1st class. It's economy on @British_Airways @airindiain @airvistara etc. also 1.2 to 2.3 lakh. College admission time! See minimum fare on @GoogleTravel in August. Have alerted Secretary @MoCA_GoI @JM_Scindia,” tweeted Gupta, sharing screenshots of the airfares.
Gupta's tweet came as the UK moved India from "red" to "amber" list, giving relaxations from hotel quarantine to travellers.
The DGCA asked the airlines on Sunday to submit details about the airfares they have been charging for India-UK flights during August.
While there have been lower and upper limits on all domestic airfares in India since May 25 last year, no such limits have been imposed on international airfares.
Scheduled international passenger flights have been suspended in India since March 23 last year amid the coronavirus pandemic.
However, limited special international passenger flights have been operating since July 2020 under the air bubble arrangements formed with 28 countries, including the UK.