Air India to be 100% Privatised by May-end : Hardeep Puri

Air India to be 100% Privatised by May-end or closed, said the aviation minister. He said “We’ve decided that Air India will be 100 per cent disinvestment. The choice isn’t between disinvestment and non-disinvestment. It’s between disinvestment and closing down. Air India is a first-rate asset but has an accumulated debt of Rs 60,000 crore. It is liable to be sold,”.

“At a meeting on Monday, it was decided that the government will close the financial bids within 64 days,” Puri said, adding that there were multiple bidders and some have been shortlisted. He added that earlier attempts at privatization were not successful because those attempts were “half hearted”. The airline, which did not attract any buyer for long has now witnessed Tata Sons and SpiceJet’s promoter Ajay Singh come up as potential bidders.

Other Public sector undertakings (PSUs) like Pawan Hans disinvestment is also under process, the minister added. The minister also said that the second wave of COVID-19 has delayed airlines being allowed to operate at 100 per cent capacity that was planned to happen from the start of the summer schedule this month-end. But for now, there are no questions to curtail the domestic operations, he added.

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