Tuesday, January 07, 2020

Selling national carrier Air India anti-national: CPI MP

New Delhi: Selling national carrier Air India to private players is anti-national and the disinvestment cannot be justified given the losses incurred by the state-run airline, senior CPI leader and Rajya Sabha member Binoy Viswam said.

A vocal critic of the Modi government and its economic policies, Viswam said that government needs to find out the reasons for the airline''s losses instead of putting it on the block.

He vowed to oppose the government''s privatisation overdrive in the upcoming budget session of Parliament that is expected to begin in the last week of January.

"Any Indian citizen with national pride will oppose it. I wonder why BJP, which always talks of nationalism from the rooftop, is selling the national assets like Air India and BPCL. All of them are now on sale. They (government) are looking at foreign capital also for the sale to go through. They are rolling out the red carpet for foreigners to come and occupy Indian playing ground," he told IANS.

"The Left will not allow this. We will oppose it," Viswam added.

The government has decided to sell Air India lock, stock and barrel by the end of current financial year and may come out with preliminary information memorandum (PIM) inviting expression of interest (EoI) from private players in the current month.

"We are in the process of completing the work for inviting EoI. We should be able to do it shortly," said a top Aviation Ministry official.
07/01/20 IANS/Outlook

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