Changes the govt has made to airport regulation raise troubling questions

An unhealthy precedent appears to have been created by the Modi government in the way regulation of sectors is undertaken. If the sector has grown rapidly and several private players are entering it in partnership with public sector entities, then the scope and powers of the independent regulator can now be curtailed on the apparently specious ground that the burden on it must be reduced.   This is exactly what happened when the government got the Airports Economic Regulatory Authority of India Act, 2008 amended in Parliament last week. Two specific features of the earlier law have been.....

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