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Private airlines hike ticket cost

Special Correspondent

CHENNAI: Feeling the pinch of burning aviation turbine fuel (ATF) while being made to circle over airports in the country, airline operators have added a new fee of Rs. 150 to the cost of ticketsfrom Friday. Jet Airways and Kingfisher Airlines have already implemented the "air traffic congestion surcharge."

"We are also falling in line with other operators with immediate effect," M. Thiagarajan, Managing Director of Paramount Airways, told The Hindu . He said this on board the inaugural flight of the airways between Chennai and Thiruvananthapuram.

The Federation of Indian Airlines, an association formed by the promoters of airlines, has requested Finance Minister P. Chidambaram to reduce the tax burden on ATF, and provide a subsidy to help sustain the boom in the civil aviation sector.

The FIA, Mr. Thiagarajan said, was formed to take up issues concerning the sector. It would not intervene in the fixing of fares by the various carriers.

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