The new ground handling policy proposed by the Indian government for the six airports in the country has been opposed by sections of the domestic airline industry.
Air Sahara, SpiceJet and Jet Airways have all expressed apprehensions on the new policy being implemented.
"We would like to wait till the policy is out to make a formal comment. However, we feel that the Government should look at a policy that allows airlines that have spent at least 10 years to continue doing their own ground handling," Air Sahara president, Alok Sharma, said.
The Cabinet Committee on Security (CCS) last month approved the new ground handling policy that would allow only three agencies to carry out ground handling activities at six metro airports including Delhi, Mumbai, Chennai, Bangalore, Hyderabad and Kolkata. The new policy, that will not allow airlines to carry out ground handling activities, is to become effective from January 1, 2009.
Jet Airways CEO, Wolfgang Prock- Schauer, added that the airline had always been of the opinion ground handling both in the ramp and terminal was an integral part of its service.
"We are the biggest domestic carrier having substantial operations in all major metro airports and will request the Government to allow us to continue doing this," Prock-Schauer, said.
Airline officials indicated that the implementation of the new policy could also lead to several thousand of people being unemployed. Air Sahara officials said that at present it had about 1,800-2,000 people carrying out ground handling activities, while Jet Airways had more than 4,000 people doing similar activities