Saturday, September 09, 2017

PAC members oppose Air India divestment

Some members of the Public Accounts Committee (PAC) on Friday opposed the proposed disinvestment of Air India, saying that the national carrier is now performing "relatively better", according to sources.

The committee, headed by senior Congress leader Mallikarjun Kharge, today interacted with officials from the Civil Aviation Ministry and Air India on the airline's turnaround plan.

Sources said some of the members opposed the proposed divestment of Air India and sought an explanation from the ministry on the decision. Members wanted to know the reason for such a decision when the airline, which is receiving money under turnaround plan, is doing "relatively better", sources added.

Some members wanted to know about the bailout money pumped in when the airline goes for divestment and the interest burden, they said. Civil Aviation Secretary R N Choubey, among other officials, was present at the meeting.

Approved by the previous UPA regime in 2012, the turnaround plan provides for equity infusion of Rs 30,231 crore up to 2021 into Air India subject to the carrier achieving certain milestones. As part of the plan, various steps have been taken to cut costs and losses.
08/09/17 PTI/moneycontrol

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