The Union Cabinet on Wednesday cleared the Civil Aviation Policy unveiling a slew of passenger-friendly measures including capping of airfares at Rs 2,500 for an hour-long flight.
Cabinet also gave its approval for partial abolition of the 5/20 rule, which will enable new carriers like to start international operations sooner and airlines no longer have to fulfill the requirement of five years of domestic operation to fly abroad.
However, an airline will have to allocate 20 aircraft or 20% of their total fleet of aircraft, whichever is higher, to the domestic sector if they wish to fly overseas. This effectively means a carrier must have a minimum 20 aircraft in its domestic fleet.
“This is to ensure that any new airlines starting business in India should essentially serve the remote parts of the country,” a ministry official said.
NDA government for the first time unveiled the policy draft in November 2014, subsequently replacing it with another draft in October 2015.
Initially, the policy was expected to be finalized in the last financial year as certain proposals were to be implemented from April 1, 2016. The ministry had sent the civil aviation policy to Cabinet for approval on June 3.