Monday, September 13, 2021

Air India bid rigged, needs to be scrapped: BJP MP Subramanian Swamy

New Delhi: BJP leader and Rajya Sabha MP Subramanian Swamy on Monday redflagged the ongoing bidding process to sell off the state-carrier Air India, claiming that it is "rigged" and threatened to move court against it.

Speaking to UNI, Swamy demanded scrapping of the process, days before the cut-off date (September 15) for submitting financial bids for the airline which has been bleeding financially for long.

The government had last year invited expressions of interest for selling 100 per cent stakes in Air India.

Tatas have been widely reported to be one of the two bidders along with SpiceJet promoter Ajay Singh. Neither has ever officially confirmed or denied their participation. The government too has been tight-lipped on qualified bidders for Air India and has maintained strict confidentiality.

"This bid is already illegal. Because the minimum requirement is of two bidders, it's a rigged one. Because SpiceJet is not really a bidder. It's in huge financial problem. It's in no position to run another airline or even have a merged airline with Air India. So, therefore, this will not stand," Swamy told UNI over phone.

"Tatas are not qualified. They are already under a cloud in the Air Asia (India) matter and I have got a court case on that. I have already brought this to the notice in writing to the Civil Aviation Ministry," he said, adding he "certainly" would go to the court.

13/09/21 Nirbhay Kumar/UNI

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