Airfares go sky-high; fliers upset

With the Met Office forecasting snow and rains in Kashmir till January 7, airlines shot up fares to the summer capital by almost 70 per cent.
Airfares go sky-high; fliers upset

With the Met Office forecasting snow and rains in Kashmir till January 7, airlines shot up fares to the summer capital by almost 70 per cent.

Making fliers upset, the airfares in the last two have increased sharply.

A Srinagar-Delhi ticket which was priced at Rs 4000-Rs 5000 just two days back has now gone up to Rs 12,000- Rs 19,000 for Saturday. Similarly, there has also been a sudden increase on Srinagar-Jammu sector with per head airfares touching more than Rs 15,000 for Saturday.

President, Kashmir Chamber of Commerce and Industry (KCCI) Mushtaq Ahmad Wani said there should be a fixed upper ceiling of the airfares which cannot be breached by the airlines during any season. 

"We had raised the issue of airfares on Srinagar-Delhi sector with the Director General Civil Aviation (DGCA) prior to the unrest. 

He had assured us that the fares will be kept under check. We had even met civil aviation minister and will follow up on the same with him," Wani said.  

Travel Agents Association of Kashmir President ManzoorSidiq the spike in prices will have a "negative impact on inflow of winter tourists. 

"It is unfortunate that at a time when tourism has started picking up due to the snow in the Valley, the airlines have hiked the prices which will have a negative impact on the inflow of tourists," Sidiq said.  

Meanwhile, Director Airport Authority of India (Srinagar) Sharad Kumar said a new airline that he did not name, will start operations to Srinagar from Feb 19, 2017. 

Kumar said this will make the total number of arrivals to Srinagar 20. 

President, Travel Agents Society of Kashmir, Muhammad Ibrahim Siah welcomed addition of a new airline to Srinagar and said addition of more flights to the summer capital will help to regulate airfares.

Airlines who had cut down their number of flights to Srinagar during the unrest say the hike in airfares is due to the "demand and supply" factor. 

Many of these airlines say state government should slash the taxes it charges from these companies and even Air Force should cut down "landing charges" to stabilize the prices.

In 2014, the State Human Rights Commission had observed that fare hike hits the local patients and students going for treatment/studies outside the state, badly. 

The commission had sought reports from Director Civil Aviation and all airlines into the matter.

Related Stories

No stories found.
Greater Kashmir
www.greaterkashmir.com