IndiGo cannot have T-1 of IGI Airport exclusively: SpiceJet tells Delhi HC

Low-cost carrier SpiceJet on Wednesday told the Delhi High Court that Terminal-1 (T-1) of the IGI Airport in New Delhi cannot be given exclusively to IndiGo Airlines, as doing so would be anti-competitive.

IndiGo, on the other hand, told the court that it cannot give up its option of staying fully in T-1 and said if in future its number of passengers exceeds the capacity of the terminal, it will move some of it to T-2.

It declined to accept the partial shift of its operations to T-2, as ordered by Delhi International Airport Ltd (DIAL), saying its suggestion to be allowed to stay in T-1 and GoAir and SpiceJet be moved to T-2, was never considered.

The submissions were made before a bench of Justices Hima Kohli and Rekha Palli which reserved its judgement on IndiGo's plea challenging a single judge order of December 20, 2017, upholding DIAL's decision to partially shift operations of the three airlines from T-1 to T-2.

The development comes barely a week after IndiGo told the court said some headway has been made in the meeting with DIAL to resolve the issues related to partial shifting of the flights of the three airlines to T-2.

During the final arguments today, SpiceJet also told the bench it was not opposed to DIAL's decision and despite the operational difficulties, it will partially move its operations to T-2 by February 15, the date set by the high court in its December 20 order.

It said the partial shift of operations was important for larger public good.

GoAir, which has fully moved to T-2, said being a smaller airline, partial shifting of its operations would "kill" it.

DIAL defended its decision saying it took the step to partially shift operations of the airlines after giving them ample time to arrive at a solution by themselves.

It also alleged that IndiGo has not approached the court with clean hands as it has not clearly stated what its exact passenger traffic was and has allegedly modifying the numbers to show it has not exceeded the T-1 capacity.

The charge was opposed by IndiGo which had earlier told the court that in view of T-2's operational capacity, both GoAir and Spicejet, keeping in view their traffic load and operations as per data provided by DIAL, could be accommodated there.

On October 21 last year, DIAL had asked the three airlines to shift their flights to and from Delhi to Mumbai, Kolkata and Bengaluru, to T-2 from January 4. All other flights of the airlines would continue to operate from T-1, the airport operator had said.

While upholding DIAL's decision, the single judge had given the airlines time till February 15 to partially shift their operations.

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