The aviation industry has faced huge losses in the period between April and June 2020 due to the Covid-19 pandemic, said Union Civil Aviation Minister Hardeep Singh Puri in a written reply in the Rajya Sabha on Wednesday. As per the minister’s reply, the revenue of airlines fell by 85.7% to Rs 3,651 crore during the first quarter of this financial year in comparison to the same period last year. Employee numbers have also gone down from 74,887 on 31 March to 69,589 on 31 July, marking a decrease of 7.07 per cent, stated Puri.
“The revenue of Indian carriers has reduced from Rs 25,517 crore during April-June 2019 to Rs 3,651 crore during April-June 2020,” said Union Minister Hardeep Puri. “The revenue of airport operators has reduced from Rs 5,745 crore during April-June 2019 to Rs 894 crore during April- June 2020, and employees have also been reduced from 67,760 on 31 March to 64,514 on 31 July,” added Puri.
As per the statement, the employee numbers on the ground handling agencies fell by 22.44% to 29,254 in the April-July period and the domestic air traffic in the country fell to 1.2 crore during the March-July period as compared to 5.85 crore in the same period a year ago. During this time, international traffic also dropped to 11.55 lakh in the March-July period as opposed to 93.45 lakh the year before, the minister informed.
However, in the period till 31 August, the special inter- national passenger flights under the Vande Bharat Mission by Air India earned a revenue of Rs 2,556.60 crore, as per the ministry. Earlier, scheduled domes- tic flight services had been suspended in India from March 25 to May 24 due to the coronavirus scare. They had been resumed from 25 May but with restrictions. Meanwhile, scheduled international flights have been suspended in India since 23 March, with only international flights under the bilateral air bubble arrangements flying.