With an aim to make domestic carriers mandatorily fly to more Tier-3 and Tier-4 cities, the Union Civil Aviation Minister Ajit Singh is thinking of toughening the route dispersal guidelines.
The problem with these cities is not that they are in remote locations but they do not have connectivity, Ajit Singh told a business newspaper. The government is looking at creating a new category of such locations in the route dispersal guidelines, so the air carriers have to fly a certain percentage of their flights for tier three and four cities. The government could also increase the 10 per cent rule.
Basically, the plan is to recategorise the categories in route dispersal guidelines of 1994 according to the current economic conditions of the cities. Under the current policy, a domestic carrier has to fly 10 per cent of the number of flights that it does in metropolitan and large cities (category-1) to destinations in the northeast, Andaman and Nicobar Islands and Jammu & Kashmir (category–2).