What the Indian media will not tell you about Kingfisher Red
So Kingfisher has decided to ground its low-cost airline, Kingfisher Red. Here’s what the Indian media will not tell you.
There was a rule that if your airline is less than five years old it could not be allowed to fly international. This was ridiculous: an upstart airline could fly from Delhi to Chennai but not Chennai to Colombo. There was method in the madness. The rule was to prevent Jet Airways from newbie competition. The people who ran civil aviation had a problem. Having made this rule, they had to find a way around them to let Vijay Mallya enjoy his good times.
Here’s how it was done. Kingfisher bough Air Deccan, whose owner later regretted selling out when he saw how Air Deccan was being destroyed under its changed name, Kingfisher Red. Now that Kingfisher had bought over an airline that was over five years old, it demanded to be allowed to fly international. The permission was given. Except it wasn’t the low-cost Kingfisher Red flying abroad. It was the high-cost Kingfisher. Good times had begun.
Purpose solved, hungama over, Praful Patel taken out of civil aviation, his ruining of Air India to benefit Kingfisher and Jet exposed… Kingfisher Red is shutting down. Bye, bye.
If low-cost airlines are not viable, why was Praful Patel and the entire civil aviation ‘sector’ promising us good times, and why aren’t the other low-cost airlines shutting shop.
Capitalism 101 says if a business is not viable it should die. Apparently that doesn’t apply to the civil aviation sector in India.
Back then, 2008-ish, I remember discussing all of this in an edit meeting. I was cut short. “Praful Patel is said to be an honest minister,” the editor said. That was that.
Such is the ‘economic growth’ that is ‘trickling down’ and bring millions of Indians out of poverty. I don’t understand economics. Thank god for that.