Though the Open Sky Policy was announced 11 years back, for all practical purposes, the Indian aviation industry actually took off with the entry of as many as 6 companies in the first half of 1991 when the state run Indian Airlines was facing industrial strife.
After reporting an Rs.11 crore profit in 2001, Indian Airlines suddenly saw its market share drop and its supremacy challenged. Pilots let the airline in hordes to more lucrative jobs with the private operators, which resulted in under utilization of its Boeing fleet. Passengers, too, suddenly realized that there were airlines willing to offer that little extra bit that means so much, and Indian Airlines suddenly saw its market share drop to 53 per cent from its earlier unassailable position.
The growing disenchantment with the services (or lack of it) of IA and the frequent agitation by its employers prompted the "decision-markets" to usher in private air-taxi operators (ATO's). Nineteen others got no objection certificates (NOC). By 1996, there were 12 operators in the market, by their market share in domestic traffic was negligible.