IndiGo cancels 65 flights after DGCA order, offers full refund to flyers

48 flights from Indigo and GoAir canceled today

Since February, three other A320 Neo planes of IndiGo have been on the ground following similar engine problems.

Along with Bhubaneswar, the IndiGo flights to Mumbai, Kolkata, Pune, Jaipur, Srinagar, Chennai, Delhi, Dehradun, Amritsar, Bengaluru and Hyderabad have been cancelled for today.

"With current load factors at over 90%, this reduction in capacity is likely to have a 5-10% impact on fares on key routes in the short to medium term", Sharat Dhall, COO (B2C) at travel portal Yatra.com told Financial Express. Meanwhile, the Wadia Group-promoted GoAir, which operates 230-odd flights daily, has cancelled six flights on March 14 due to the grounding of three of its A320neo planes.

The DGCA today said there are 45 A320 neo - 32 with IndiGo and 13 with GoAir - fitted with P&W 1100 engines. The regulator said it will make further decisions on the matter after consulting with the European Aviation Safety Agency and engine manufacturer Pratt & Whitney. "But we can not play with any issue related to safety and safety is paramount", Civil Aviation Minister Suresh Prabhu reporters on the sidelines of an event here.

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GoAir has complied with the DGCA directive by grounding the late serial number PW GTF engines, the airline said in a statement later, adding "This has resulted in the cancellation of some flights originating out of eight centres".

In the national capital, Prabhu said the planes have been grounded only for passenger safety. Following this case, DGCA ordered A320 Neos fitted with PW1100 engines beyond ESN 450 to be grounded with immediate effect.

Cancellation of 65 flights by the country's largest airline IndiGo and GoAir due to grounding of 11 aircraft lead to a spike in last-minute fares on Tuesday, as passengers booked on cancelled flights tried to rebook on alternative flights. "Flights have either been combined or we have seen passengers accommodated on other flights".

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