Government being asked to allow drinks on domestic flights

March 31st, 2008 - 10:46 pm ICT by admin  


New Delhi, March 31 (IANS) Domestically produced wine and beer may soon be served on Indian flights. The government is under pressure from the airline operators as well as politicians to permit serving of alcoholic drinks on domestic flights, a top aviation official said Monday. “There is no reason why booze should not be permitted on domestic flights,” said the official.

He said the civil aviation ministry has received quite a number of representations from the airlines and grape and wine makers in this regard.

“Let us receive a proposal. If the directorate general of civil aviation (DGCA) makes such a proposal, the ministry can consider it and then take it to the union cabinet for approval,” the official said.

Earlier, four Rajya Sabha members, attending a meeting of the parliamentary consultative committee on civil aviation, asked the aviation ministry to push this proposal.

Currently, India’s rules do not allow serving of alcoholic drinks on domestic flights.

Alcohol is served on Air India’s international flights. Besides, international flights coming to India also serve liquor on board.

Till a few years back, the law permitted drinks on domestic flights. Airlines like Damania Airways and East West used to serve alcohol on board. However, the airlines voluntarily called it off after several instances of drunken brawls in the aircraft.

Later, the government officially banned alcohol on domestic flights.

But now private airlines have been lobbying for the government’s approval. Kingfisher Airlines’ promoter UB Group is itself the world’s third largest producer of spirits with over 140 alcohol brands.

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