It's not all doom and gloom for India's embattled airline sector.
IndiGo, a low-fare carrier launched in 2006, has climbed to second place in market share at the expense of Air India and Kingfisher Airlines and is the only one of India's six main carriers making a profit, for now at least.
IndiGo also sells and leases back its planes, sparing its balance sheet and allowing itself to maintain a young fleet. Industry watchers say there is no great secret to IndiGo's success, which they attribute to rigid adherence to a disciplined business plan, a task that grows more complex as the 50-plane airline adds a new plane every month.
IndiGo has 21 percent of the domestic market, behind the combined low-cost and premium operations of Jet Airways, but up from its 17 percent share at the end of 2010. The Centre for Asia Pacific Aviation (CAPA) expects IndiGo to take the top spot from Jet in a few months in an aviation market that grew 17 percent in 2011 and is expected to expand by about 12 percent annually over the next few years.
Last year, IndiGo placed what was then the biggest-ever commercial airline order for 180 Airbus A320s worth $16 billion to be delivered starting in 2015 when an earlier 100-plane order is completed. It also began flying to a handful of foreign destinations using the same narrow-body plane type.
The airline has said it would consider an IPO, but Ghosh said recently it has no current plans to do so. IndiGo says it earned 6.5 billion rupees ($131 million) in the fiscal year that ended last March, a result that Kingfisher's Mallya has questioned.