Industry Desk: Tata Group has officially taken over Air India from the government yesterday.
Chairman of Tata Sons N Chandrasekharan met Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi today, before the official handover of the Air India to the Tata Group. The Prime Minister’s Office released the photo of the meeting between PM Modi and Tata chairman.
The official handover of Air India is the first major successful deal of privatisation in the last few decades. This also marks the homecoming of Air India, launched in 1932 by Tata Group’s former chairman JRD Tata. As the chairman met PM Modi, senior officials reached the headquarters of Air India in New Delhi and the final handover process was completed with the members resigning from the Air India Board.
The Tata group has already planned the changes they are planning to bring in and the first has already been implemented on Thursday in four flights operating from Mumbai. The Tata Group provided enhanced meal services on AI864 (Mumbai-Delhi), AI687 (Mumbai-Delhi), AI945 (Mumbai-Abu Dhabi) and AI639 (Mumbai-Bengaluru).
In October last year, Tata Group won the bid the acquire the debt-laden Air India along with Air India Express and 50% state in AISATS. For smooth functioning of the airlines, an SBI-led consortium of lenders has agreed to provide loans to the Tata Group. All large lenders, including Punjab National Bank, Bank of Baroda, and Union Bank of India, are part of the consortium, reports said.
As of August 31, Air India had a total debt of ?61,562 crore. Around 75 per cent of this debt or ?46,262 crore will be transferred to a special purpose vehicle AIAHL before handing over the loss-making airline to Tata Group.
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