India’s Minister of State for Civil Aviation V. K. Singh has informed Rajya Sabha that around 1,000 passenger complaints were received against Air India during the last three months.
Singh said these complaints were related to various issues such as refund of fares, overbooking of flights, and staff behaviour. In a written reply to a question in Rajya Sabha, Singh added:
“Ministry of Civil Aviation has been receiving grievances related to air transport, including Air India, on the various issues such as refund of fares, flight issues, staff behaviour, baggage issues, overbooking of flights, etc.”
India’s aviation regulator, the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA), on June 14 said it imposed a fine of Rs 10 lakh (AUD 18,000) on Air India for denying boarding to passengers holding valid tickets and thereafter not providing mandatory compensation to them.
The DGCA had in May said that the airlines are indulging in “unfair practice” of denying boarding to passengers even when they report for their flights at the airport on time.
Further, the aviation regulator had also asked all Indian carriers to give compensation and facilities to passengers affected by such denial of boarding, failing which it would impose financial penalties on them.
In July, aN AIR India-operated Boeing 787 plane with around 260 people on board suffered cabin depressurisation while flying from Dubai to Kochi. According to official sources, the flight was diverted to Mumbai and alternate aircraft was arranged to carry passengers from Mumbai to Kochi.
Earlier this year in January, the Tata Group took control of Air India after winning the bid for the airline. The Tata Group, in a Twitter post, tagged Air India and said: “Your arrival was much awaited.” It also posted a photo saying “Welcome back, Air India!”.
In a press release, Tata Sons said:
“We philosophically agree with the Prime Minister’s vision for the aviation sector, of making it affordable and ensuring it contributes to boosting ‘Ease of Living’ for citizens.”
Air India has 12,085 employees – 8,084 permanent and 4,001 contractual.