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Civil Aviation Ministry could have a re-look into the high compensation

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New Delhi: The Civil Aviation Ministry could have a re – look into the draft citizen charter that has proposed to increase compensation to Rs 20,000 for passengers who miss connecting flights due to cancellation or delays, in the wake of stiff opposition from some airlines to the provision, sources indicated today.

The charter has also proposed abolishing penalties on ticket modifications done within 24 hours of booking.

The sources said the charter is expected to be discussed threadbare during a meeting of the ministry with the airlines and other stake-holders on May 1

“There have been objections and we are studying them. During the meeting, we will try to find a way out which is beneficial both to the passengers as well as the airlines,” the sources said.

The collective apprehension is that the increase in compensation could see a spike in air fares, thus negating the benefits accrued to passengers from increasing the compensation, they said.

The citizen charter, which would be put in public domain, has proposed a compensation which could go up to Rs 20,000 for missing connecting flights due to cancellation or delays in the initial journey.

The Federation of Indian Airlines (FIA), comprising carriers such as IndiGo, SpiceJet, Go Air and Jet Airways with 80 per cent of the market share, has expressed fears that increase in compensation could affect the financial viability of the airlines.

As per the draft citizen charter, in case of denial of boarding, the compensation could be Rs 5,000 as such instances have seen a sharp rise in the recent past.

Civil Aviation Secretary R N Choubey had earlier said that the easy-to-understand passenger charter would mention all entitlements of an air traveller as the existing regulations of the Directorate General of Civil Aviation, the aviation watchdog, with regard to compensation were not passenger-friendly

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