India reacts strongly to air fare requests

Dec. 3, 2010 at 1:51 PM

NEW DELHI, Dec. 3 (UPI) -- Airline regulators in India said domestic carriers had asked for rate hikes that were too high, calling executives to meet to explain the price proposals.

"There was an extraordinary hike in fares during the Diwali vacation. We do not want that to be repeated during Christmas," Civil Aviation Minister Praful Patel said.

Patel said there was "no justification" for the new fares, the Press Trust of India reported Friday.

On the merits -- or lack of merits -- of the price hike proposal, the Civil Aviation agency set up an Economic Advisory Council to monitor and advise the agency on industry finances.

"Government and (the) director general of civil aviation have viewed these developments (fare proposals) very seriously and we feel corrective action must be taken," Patel said.

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