Agartala: Tripura Police's Criminal Investigation Department (CID) has launched a probe into hoarding of flight tickets and manipulation of their rates, officials said here Monday.
"Following reports of bulk booking of air tickets by a section of travel agencies, our officials have raided offices of six agencies in the past two days and collected all relevant documents. None has been arrested yet," Superintendent of Police (CID) Sanjoy Roy told IANS.
He said: "We are now studying the guidelines of various airlines and relevant aspects and then we would take our next action."
In the recent months, eight airlines, including the Jet Airways, stopped their operations on the Agartala-Kolkata-Guwahati routes causing enormous problems for the Kolkata, Guwahati and Agartala-bound passengers.
Several hundred passengers, including patients and job seekers, have been stranded in Agartala, Kolkata and Guwahati in view of the crisis of air tickets.
It was reported in the media here that the travel agencies of Agartala were taking advantage of the situation by booking air tickets in fake names and selling these to passengers at exorbitantly high prices.
Currently, SpiceJet, IndiGo and Air India have been operating their flights on the Agartala-Kolkata-Guwahati route.
The Tripura government last month reduced the VAT (value-added tax) on aviation turbine fuel (ATF) by four percent to encourage the airlines to operate their flights on the Agartala-Kolkata-Guwahati route.
"The state government on the request of the central government has reduced the VAT on ATF by four percent. Earlier, the VAT on ATF was 22 percent and now it would be 18 percent," Finance Minister Bhanulal Saha said.
Transport Minister Manik Dey and members of parliament from the state have separately urged the central government to intervene in the issue and resolve the problem.