Economy
Fliers to benefit as regulator moots cut in IGI Airport charges
In what could become a significant respite to travellers flying in and out of the national capital, the levy for airport charges on passengers and airlines has been proposed to be slashed by around 96 percent.
 
The new tariff rate for the second control period which formally runs from April 1, 2014, to March 31, 2019, was disclosed in an order issued by Airports Economic Regulatory Authority of India (AERA).
 
Among other things, the order issued on December 10 has brought down the user development fee (UDF) charged on departing domestic passenger to Rs.10 and to Rs.45 for international travellers.
 
Currently, Delhi International Airport Limited (DIAL), the firm which operates IGI Airport charges UDF ranging from Rs.275 to Rs.550 from domestic departing passengers, whereas the international departing travellers are levied an UDF ranging between Rs.635 and Rs.1,270.
 
Nevertheless, as an interim measure AERA has allowed DIAL to reduce only about 89.4 percent of overall charges. The measure will allow DIAL to meet its cash deficit by Rs.691.50 crore.
 
However, the proposed reduction in overall airport charges for the second control period cannot be implemented due to existing legal proceedings going on in Airports Economic Regulatory Authority Appellate Tribunal (AERAAT). 
 
"With regards to implementation of this order, the authority notes that the Hon'ble High Court has permitted DIAL to charge the tariff applicable for the first control period till AERAAT decides on the appeals filed by DIAL, and the Hon'ble High Court has indicated a time frame for AERAAT to dispose the appeals," AERA said in its order.
 
"The authority has appealed against this order of Hon'ble High Court and depending upon the outcome of the legal process, the date of implementation of this tariff order will be decided." 
 
Disclaimer: Information, facts or opinions expressed in this news article are presented as sourced from IANS and do not reflect views of Moneylife and hence Moneylife is not responsible or liable for the same. As a source and news provider, IANS is responsible for accuracy, completeness, suitability and validity of any information in this article.

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Delhi just tip of India's air pollution iceberg: Greenpeace
As many as 15 Indian cities possess air quality index far over than the prescribed standards and Delhi is just the "tip of the air pollution iceberg", said a Greenpeace study released on Tuesday.
 
A ranking of the 17 cities covered by the National Air Quality Index (NAQI) was released by the NGO, which revealed Delhi is just a "tip of the air pollution iceberg in the country."
 
"As many as 15 of the 17 Indian cities with NAQI stations showed levels of air pollution that far exceed Indian standards. As the political capital - and indeed, the most polluted of all cities - the bad air in Delhi gets the most attention," Greenpeace said.
 
The PM 2.5 (particulate matter with diameter below 2.5 microns) levels, which are a measure of pollution, in cities like Lucknow, Ahmedabad, Muzzafarpur and Faridabad are also on levels of a 'red alert', the analysis said.
 
"Even the government's own, largely inadequate NAQI data reveals that 23 of the 32 stations across India are showing more than 70 percent exceedance of the national standards," said Greenpeace India campaigner Sunil Dahiya.
 
The pollution levels in a few Indian cities have the "embarrassing distinction" of having exceeded the toxic levels of Beijing and other Chinese cities, demonstrating levels at least ten times higher than the WHO standards, making air pollution truly a "national emergency", he added.
 
There is an immediate need to diversify and upgrade the manual stations to ambient air quality monitoring stations feeding data to the online NAQI portal, the NGO said.
 
Greenpeace also called for a "systematic clean air action plan", with focused targets, clear timelines and demonstrable accountability towards public health.
 
Disclaimer: Information, facts or opinions expressed in this news article are presented as sourced from IANS and do not reflect views of Moneylife and hence Moneylife is not responsible or liable for the same. As a source and news provider, IANS is responsible for accuracy, completeness, suitability and validity of any information in this article.

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Swachh Bharat cess to realize Rs.10,000 crore annually
The government is poised to raise Rs.10,000 crore revenue annually from levy of the 0.5 percent Swachh Bharat cess (SBC), parliament was told on Tuesday.
 
Though the government did not fix any target for SBC in the current or upcoming fiscal years, revenue is expected to touch Rs.10,000 crore in a full financial year, Minister of State for Finance Jayant Sinha told the Rajya Sabha in a written reply.
 
Introduced on November 15, the SBC is applied on all services falling under purview of service tax, and will be used for Swachh Bharat initiatives.
 
Disclaimer: Information, facts or opinions expressed in this news article are presented as sourced from IANS and do not reflect views of Moneylife and hence Moneylife is not responsible or liable for the same. As a source and news provider, IANS is responsible for accuracy, completeness, suitability and validity of any information in this article.

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