CCI Dismisses Complaint Against Air India Ltd. Citing Lack of Evidence for Cartelization or Bid-Rigging

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Published on: December 21, 2023 at 16:58 IST

The Competition Commission of India (CCI), comprising Chairperson Ravneet Kaur, Member Anil Agrawal, Member Sweta Kakkad, and Member Deepak Anurag, has closed the complaint filed by Mr. Deepak Kumar against Air India Limited (OP), citing a lack of evidence supporting allegations of cartelization or bid-rigging.

In the case, the CCI found no contravention of the Competition Act, 2002, as the Informant failed to provide evidence substantiating claims of anti-competitive practices by Air India Ltd.


Air India Ltd., an airline company operating in both domestic and international flights in India, faced allegations from Mr. Deepak Kumar, a former pilot with the company. The Informant raised concerns about the adverse impact of Air India’s merger with the Tata Group on his career and service record, alleging malicious destruction of his service records by the company.

Contentions of the Informant:

The Informant argued that Air India, through a cartel with the Tata Group, violated Section 3(3) of the Competition Act by concealing material facts related to his service while Singapore Airlines sought to acquire a share in Air India.

Additionally, he claimed a violation of Section 3(3)(d) due to bid-rigging in the acquisition process and a breach of Section 3(4)(d) as Air India refused to deal with him.

The Informant also alleged a contravention of Section 4, asserting that Air India abused its dominant position, leading to prejudicial actions against him.

Observations of the Commission:

The CCI dismissed the case, emphasizing that the Informant failed to present any evidence supporting claims of cartelization or bid-rigging by Air India Ltd.

The Commission noted that the allegations seemed to stem from an inter-se dispute regarding the Informant’s service, suggesting a lack of substance in the anti-competitive claims.

In its conclusion, the CCI affirmed that there was no violation of the provisions of the Competition Act, 2002, and therefore closed the case.

Case Title: Deepak Kumar vs Air India Limited

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