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DGCA to hold a meeting tomorrow to take stock of rising airfares

PW Bureau

The problem of rising airfares in the Indian market has "aggravated” after the aviation watchdog last week grounded all 12 of SpiceJet's 737 Max aircraft

New Delhi: The Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) will hold a meeting on Tuesday to discuss the increasing airfares following a significant number of cancellations and groundings by Jet Airways, a government executive said.  The problem of rising airfares in the Indian market has "aggravated” after the aviation watchdog last week grounded all 12 of SpiceJet's 737 Max aircraft in the wake of this month’s Ethiopian Airlines crash, that killed all 157 people on board, the official said. "DGCA has called a meeting at Tuesday noon to discuss the airfare rise because of a significant number of cancellations done by Jet Airways in the last few weeks," the government official said.

Jet grounds four more aircraft

Beleaguered Jet Airways on Monday announced that it grounded four more aircraft, taking the number of planes that are non-operational because of non-payment of lease rentals to 41. In a notification to its passengers, Etihad Airport services said, "Jet Airways has cancelled all their flights from Abu Dhabi with immediate effect from March 18 due to operational reasons." The airline has a fleet of 119 planes, as per its website.

Passengers have in the past few weeks been expressing their anger on social media following an increase in Jet Airways' flight cancellations because of a growing number of grounded planes. Hit with financial woes, Jet has been seeking ways to raise fresh funds.

"An additional four aircraft have been grounded due to non-payment of amounts outstanding to lessors under their respective lease agreements," the airline said in a filing to the stock exchanges on Monday.