The government's plan to liberalise land usage by AAI airports by amending law has been put on hold pending a decision from the Supreme Court on the matter, Minister of State for Civil Aviation Jayant Sinha said as per the PTI report.
Clause 12 d of the National Civil Aviation Policy, 2016 provided for "liberalising end-use restrictions for existing (excluding PPP) and future greenfield and brownfield airports of AAI and future greenfield and brownfield airport projects under PPP."
This would mean that while all AAI airports and future PPP airports could commercially utilise their land for providing non-aeronautical services like bank ATMs, hotels, motels, general retail shops etc, existing PPP airports such as Delhi airport would not be able to do so.
In line with this clause, the government had initiated a proposal for amendment in the Airports Authority of India (AAI) Act, 1994.
However, Delhi airport challenged the government in High Court for excluding "existing PPP" from liberalised use. The court said that this violated the right to equality provided in the Constitution.
"The proposal of amendment in the AAI Act has been kept in abeyance," Sinha said in Rajya Sabha in response to a question.
He also said the government has moved the Supreme Court against the decision of Delhi High Court.