The Delhi High Court Wednesday issued notice to the central government on a plea of BJP leader Subramanian Swamy challenging the clearance given to the proposed low-cost airline AirAsia India. The petition alleged wrongdoing in the process and claimed that according to the policy foreign investment was only permitted in an existing airline but AirAsia India was not an existing carrier.
The division bench of Chief Justice NV Ramana and Justice Pradeep Nandrajog, however, refused to stay the permission given by the government. The court issued notices to the Foreign Investment Promotion Board, commerce and industry and civil aviation ministries and asked them to file their responses by Oct 30.
The government March 26 approved Malaysian low-cost airline AirAsia’s proposal to set up a new airline in India in partnership with the Tata Group and the Arun Bhatia-promoted Telestra Tradeplace. On Aug 16, the Supreme Court had asked Swamy to move the high court with his plea. AirAsia India will be based in Chennai in which the Malaysian carrier will hold a 49% stake.