Very impressive move by Shri Kuldeep Rai Sharma, President Pradesh Congress Committee on the serious matter of non-availibility of LTC quota tickets/airfares. 
 
It has been a common practice for Air India and previously Indian Airlines not issuing NOC to government servants, when such LTC fares are not available.
 
Rather the staffs have been seen, saying the passengers or the govt. servants, that they will issue NOC only if they purchased Tickets on higher rates from Air India only.
 
Why are they doing such unlawful practices being govt. employee themselves? When LTC quota ticket is not available and if a passenger is getting lesser fare in Private airlines, why is the need to buy high fare ticket from Air India? And why Air India staffs do not issue NOC, so that the govt employee can buy Cheaper fare ticket in any other airline, if entitled to do so?

ActiveIndian (Fighting Against Corruption in Andaman)


Even a Labour working for on salary of Rs. 3000, a Govt. servant working on a salary of Rs.7000-30000 or a patient needing for an emergency treatment would know about the fact that Airfares between Port Blair and Mainland (Chennai or Kolkata) are out of range these days, be it peak season or off-season.
 
The respectable Leaders and Our Administration have been giving the statements that they were writing to the concerned Ministries about the higher airfares prevailing in Andaman sector but everthing seems to have gone in Vain and who knows how much effort has actually been put into aggressive action.
 
All the Airlines specially AirIndia and others operating in this sector like Jet and Kingfisher are going on increasing the airfares for this sector. 
 
Individuals are writing, Some politicians and NGO’s are writing but it’s time for them to come under one-roof and approach jointly with a HANDSHAKE-PROTOCOL and talk directly to the Aviation Ministry as well as Chief’s of All Airlines regarding the Airfare problem. Else nothing will be achieved. All efforts will go in vain.
 
Active Indian
Port Blair


Dear Sir,

Apropos your news item : “Smoking in public places to be strictly banned from April 1st” I pledge my whole heartedly support for the cause. Though the ban is yet to be implemented strictly but positive results are visible already. Very few people now smoke in public places, which mean people are aware, vigorous campaign at this juncture would definitely bring desired results.

I take this opportunity to call upon the Director Health Services to initiate steps towards banning non-smokable tobacco, i.e. Zarda, Sukka, Gutka and their likes also. Peoples of almost all ages and sexes are seen chewing and spitting at public places without care a damn. The govt. is forced to spend crores of rupees on treating symptoms arising out of consuming tobacco in one or the other form. It is a menace among islanders and needs to be tackled. Sooner the better!

I am sure, the Govt. if decides, as has been done against Smoking, ban on consumption of non-smokable tobacco (Zarda, Sukka, Gutka) could also be implemented simultaneously. The benefits would be immense.

Debkumar Bhadra
Shore Point, Bambooflat, S Andaman


Once again I am forced to write regarding the Extreme High Airfares between Port Blair-Kolkata-Port Blair and Port Blair-Chennai-Port Blair. It is not understandable, why there is no protest or appraoch by the local resident of these islands regarding this matter. The airfares are out of reach of a common middle class person and at times for the government servants. Its very disturbing to see that for a 2hrs journey, all the airlines are charging minimum fare of 6900 and higher whereas for the same amount of journey time from Chennai to Delhi/Kolkata, the fare ranges from 3100-7000 max in AirIndia, Kingfisher, Jetairways apart from Spicejet, Indigo, Go-Air etc.
 
Just because Andaman is a tourist sector, Airlines do not have to right to charge so much higher fares. The problem is actually that there is not much awakening among the people of Andaman. The reason behind this can be explained as , say a person wants to travel on April/May and he is going to purchase the ticket somewhere during April starting. He will probably get fare of 9000 or above which may not be affordable for him. He will then approach respective Airline’s office who will promise to provide them a waiting list ticket in a fare around 6500 or 7000 as per market condition. If he is not satisfied then he will approach big IATA agents, who will promise the person arrange either a lesser fare ticket or the IATA will tell the person that he will send the person on some other passengers name as he has got the advantage if being IATA or having a good connections at the Airport. So the common people gets involved in malpractices along with these IATA’s and since he got this kind of help , it does not matter to him even if there is higher fares prevailing. he will just keep his mouth shut...I know few persons who travelled on low fare cancelled tickets on the name of other passengers. See corruption is everywhere. 
 
Coming back to the main point, its high time that our Administration and respectable M.P should take steps forward and talk to the Aviation Ministry and Chiefs of All the airlines operating in our sector to bring down the airfares and sell fares in the affordable range of atleast min 4000-7000 max. And also the IATA’s must be put under serious scanner for doing fraudulent things as they surely have more administrative privileges and access to the airlines systems and can do anything they may want to.
 
Also the Public must approach Honbl’e LG and the Secretary to put forward this issue.
 
JAGO PUBLIC JAGO ! WARNA YUNHI HIGH AIRFARES PAY KARTE RAHO !
 
Regards
 
ActiveIndian


Apropos your news item dated 28/01/2011, the assurance by Honble LG, that “Buffer Zone will not cause any inconvenience to the people living within the zone and that there will be no displacement of anyone on this count. Normal activites will continue …” is a welcome announcement. The peoples have been having nightmare since the cat named Buffer Zone had been let out of the bag. Misconception crept in because the public were kept in dark about the matter. But after the RD-2011 announcement by the Hon’ble LG, carried in The Daily Telegrams as well as in other local media, peoples can have a sigh of relief.
 
We now expect the administration to explain in clear terms the steps taken or being contemplated to be taken to protect the land and livelihood of those villages that falls in the Buffer Zone, so that the remaining misconceptions could be nailed in the coffin once and for all.
 
I offer my sincere thanks to the Hon’ble LG for his bold announcement on the occasion of RD-2011. I also thank The Daily Telegrams and all those private local newspaper which carried the all important Republic Day 2011 message.
 
Debkumar Bhadra
Shore Point, Bambooflat, S Andaman-744107