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As air fares rise in summer, Qatar Airways asks India to allow additional flights to Doha

Press Trust of India  |  New Delhi 

As summer air fares rise on high-volume routes connecting major Indian cities with Doha, Airways Wednesday said it has asked Indian authorities to permit additional flights on such routes on temporary basis.

"Our contingency plan is designed to make an additional number of seats available on certain high volume routes (Mumbai, New Delhi, Bangalore), but only a temporary basis and without formal changes to the current weekly seat capacity entitlement established under the 2009 Qatar-bilateral framework," said the

With shutting down its operations on April 17, there has been sudden reduction in the number of flights connecting Indian cities with Qatar's capital Consequently, the air fares for the peak summer season have shot up on these routes.

"Airways' temporary contingency plan, which has been formally submitted to the relevant Indian authorities, aims to offer a viable travelling alternative to thousands of Indian families and children that otherwise would be left without concrete options," the said.

The national carrier of said that without its contingency plan, Indian travellers will be forced to either choose expensive last-minute tickets or complicated and burdensome re-routings.

As per the 2009 bilateral framework between and Qatar, one country's can fly maximum of 24,292 passengers per week to other country.

Qatar had asked the in November 2016 to more than double this weekly seat capacity entitlement. However, the refused to accede to this request.

According to a senior official, major Indian have repeatedly expressed their fears that their international expansion plans may get hit if Qatar's weekly seat entitlement is increased as would be able to carry a lot of forward traffic to Europe, and through

According to the latest numbers from the Ministry of Interior of Qatar, there are more than 7,00,000 Indian expats living in Qatar, which account for about 25 per cent of the total population.

said Wednesday, "The sudden reduction in the number of seats offered between and various Indian cities, combined with the imminent peak in traffic demand due to summer vacation, are already putting enormous upward pressure on costs in a restricted market that is unlikely to offer new seats or re-distribute existing capacity in sufficient numbers to meet demand.

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Wed, May 15 2019. 19:41 IST