Government to sell 100% stake in Air India: Aviation minister Hardeep Singh Puri in Lok Sabha

WION Web Team New Delhi, Delhi, India Dec 12, 2019, 06.11 PM(IST)

File photo. Photograph:( Reuters )

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Air India's net loss in 2018-19 is provisionally estimated to be Rs 8,556.35 crore. 

India's aviation minister Hardeep Singh Puri today said that the government has decided to sell its entire 100 per cent stake in Air India under the proposed disinvestment process.

In a written reply in Lok Sabha, India's aviation minister said that an Air India specific alternative mechanism has been reconstituted after the formation of the new government. 

Puri added that following this the strategic disinvestment of Air India has been approved. The national carrier, which has a debt burden of more than Rs 50,000 crore, has been making losses for long and as part of revival efforts, the government has decided on disinvestment.  

The Parliament on August 3 had passed the Airports Economic Regulatory Authority of India (Amendment) Bill, 2019, which increases the threshold of annual passenger traffic for major airports to over 35 lakh with Civil Aviation stating that the government was committed to privatisation of Air India as its debt has become totally unsustainable.

Air India's net loss in 2018-19 is provisionally estimated to be Rs 8,556.35 crore. 

The minister said various measures, including enabling the swift transition of Jet Airways aircraft to other airlines, have been taken to improve the aviation sector. 

The full service carrier Jet Airways shuttered operations in April due to cash crunch. Minister Puri last month had said that the first meeting of the group of ministers (GOM) has met and takeN some decisions about Air India. 

Puri had reiterated the same point earlier as well. The aviation minister had said that the government was looking a "fair deal" for the national carrier with several trained professionals needed which included engineers.