In response to a question raised in the Parliament, the Civil Aviation Minister Hardeep Singh Puri said that SpiceJet has the highest number of passengers affected by flight cancellations between January to May 2019. An estimation of 70,060 passengers was affected due to cancellation of SpiceJet flights. The airline is said to have paid INR 1.27 crores as compensation to passengers in this regard.
Following SpiceJet was IndiGo in the cancellation list, with around 62,958 passengers affected by it between January and May. The airline has paid the cancellation compensation of INR 12.14 lakhs to these passengers. Although Jet Airways got grounded in April 2019, the airline was cancelling flights in high numbers a month before ceasing of operation. The airline’s 50,920 passengers were also affected due to flight cancellations in the said period. The airline paid INR 53.31 lakh as compensation to these passengers.
The national carrier Air India, on the other hand, recorded a total of 37,079 passengers, as affected by flight cancellations in the January-May period. The airline paid INR 89.4 lakh as compensation to these passengers, Minister said.
Minister also said that the Centre would go ahead with the process of disinvestment of Air India. Continued support from the government has resulted in an improvement of the financial and operational performances of Air India, he said in a tweet.
Last year in March 2018, the Government took the stand that the atmosphere was not conducive for the disinvestment of Air India. But this was last year, said Puri.
With the renewed decision, the Government will reconstitute the Air India Specific Alternative Mechanism, or AISAM, a body that was established for the strategic disinvestment of Air India and its five subsidiaries. AISAM comprises of a Group of Ministers. The national carrier has a total debt of INR 58,351 crores as on 31 March 2019.
On 28 March 2018, the Centre had invited Expressions of Interest for strategic disinvestment of Air India. No Expression of Interest/bid was received till the last date of receipt of bids (till 31 May 2018), Puri told the Lok Sabha on Thursday in a written response to a question.