A parliamentary panel on Thursday said flight tickets of MPs should be automatically upgraded to business class if there are vacant seats, the Hindustan Times reported on Friday, quoting a person familiar with the matter.

Telugu Desam Party MP JC Divakar Reddy, who heads the Standing Committee on Food, Consumer Affairs and Public Distribution, has asked Civil Aviation Secretary Rajiv Nayan Choubey to issue a circular with these guidelines to all domestic carriers.

It may be noted that in June 2017, IndiGo had banned Reddy from its flights after he had misbehaved with its staff at the Visakhapatnam airport. Air India, SpiceJet, Jet Airways, Vistara Airlines, GoAir, Turbo Megha Airways and Air Asia had followed suit. The airlines lifted the ban a month later.

MPs are allowed 34 free flight tickets a year, can bring along a companion and can travel business class. “But MPs travel much more during a year and often they require to fly for political engagements or personal work,” the Hindustan Times quoted a Lok Sabha member as saying.

Jet Airways, Air India and Vistara are the only airlines that have a business class cabin in domestic flights.

Reddy confirmed the panel’s request to The Times of India. “If there is vacant seat in business class, then the seat should be given to MPs,” he said. “This is all that I told the Civil Aviation Ministry.”

However, Mohammed Salim, a Lok Sabha MP of the Communist Party of India (Marxist), said: “A parliamentary panel should work steadfastly for the service of the people, not self-service for MPs.”