The Kerala Congress (M) has strongly condemned the steep hike in airfares by airline companies operating to the Gulf sector at a time when there is a heavy post-vacation rush to those countries from the State.

A statement issued by Joseph M. Puthussery, KC(M) State general secretary, on Monday, said there was no justification for the move. The hike that came in force in mid-August was expected to continue till last week of September, he said.

The price of a one-way ticket to Dubai and Sharjah had jumped from Rs.7,000 to Rs.30,000. Similar hikes were effected in air fares to other Gulf countries too, he alleged. He said the airlines fleecing non-resident Keralites during the rush season, instead of organising more services to meet the increasing demand, should be checked.

Mr. Puthussery called upon Chief Minister Oommen Chandy and Union Minister of State for Civil Aviation K.C. Venugopal to intervene in the matter urgently.

More In: Kerala | National | News