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Domestic carriers IndiGo and GoAir cancelled as many as 65 flights on Wednesday as almost one-third of their A320 Neo aircraft fleet remained grounded for the third day following a safety directive by the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA).
On Wednesday, a daily newspaper in a report published a full list of flights cancelled by IndiGo and GoAir. According to the report low cost carrier IndiGo cancelled as many as 48 flights for 18 cities. Its competitor in the domestic market GoAir struck down 18 flights for 8 cities.
“GoAir has not cancelled any flight between Delhi and Mumbai, which is not the case with IndiGo,” The Economic Times report informed.
Giving out details about the total flight that IndiGo cancelled the report revealed the airline nixed 17 flights out of Delhi airport and 3 flights out of Mumbai airport.
The other cities that IndiGo has cancelled flights from include Bengaluru, Chennai, Kolkata, Hyderabad, Guwahati, Indore, Jammu, Ranchi, Bhubaneshwar, Nagpur, Patna, Varanasi, Ahmedabad, Amritsar, Coimbatore and Cochin, Chennai, Hyderabad, Bhubhaneshwar, Kolkata, Lucknow and Delhi, the report added.
On Monday, the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA), India’s aviation regulator, stopped from flying 11 A320neo planes fitted with Pratt & Whitney engines after the ombudsman came to know that some planes had to make emergency landing for engine failure.
In its aftermath, the DGCA swung into quick action and grounded 8 planes of IndiGo and 3 run by GoAir, both the domestic airlines are no-frills carriers.
The media report that appeared on Monday said the DGCA has cited safety of aircraft operations and consequently put the break for A320 neo planes fitted with PW1100 engines beyond ESN 450 have been grounded with immediate effect.
“Both IndiGo and GoAir have been told not to refit these engines, which are spare with them in their inventory,” the DGCA had said in a release back then.
After receiving the flak from country’s top most civil aviation authority, both the airlines went on a flight cancelling mode, thus causing a lot of confusion among domestic air passengers. The situation turned panicky too as a substantial number of flights were cancelled by the two no-frills carriers.
On Wednesday, the civil aviation ministry issued a statement saying for the authorities passengers’ safety was top concern. Union minister Jayant Sinha told the PTI that safety of passengers was paramount for the government and aircraft with Pratt & Whitney engines could be used only after they were considered safe post technical analysis.
Sinha went on to say that we have to give paramount priority to safety. There are 43 such engines in the worldwide, out of which 19 are currently in India, used by IndiGo and GoAir, he added.