1. Why sell Air India, wonders BJP leader Subramanian Swamy

Why sell Air India, wonders BJP leader Subramanian Swamy

BJP Rajya Sabha MP Subramanian Swamy today questioned the proposed move to disinvest Air India, wondering why the airline need to be sold as its flights are occupied.

By: | Mumbai | Published: June 15, 2017 10:38 PM
subramanian Swamy, air india subramanian swamy, disinvest Air India, Air India privatisation BJP Rajya Sabha MP Subramanian Swamy today questioned the proposed move to disinvest Air India, wondering why the airline need to be sold as its flights are occupied. (PTI)

BJP Rajya Sabha MP Subramanian Swamy today questioned the proposed move to disinvest Air India, wondering why the airline need to be sold as its flights are occupied. “In Delhi. I travelled both ways by Air India. Every seat in all three classes was occupied. So why sell it? If we can run ISRO why not AI?,” Swamy said in a tweet. The remarks from Swamy, who is known for taking contrarian views on many issues, come against the backdrop of Finance Minister Arun Jaitley recently saying that the Civil Aviation Ministry has to explore all possibilities “as to how the privatisation of Air India can be done”.  Air India, which has more than Rs 52,000 crore debt burden, is surviving on a Rs 30,000 crore bailout package extended by the previous UPA government in 2012. Government think tank NITI Aayog has recommended to the Prime Minister’s Office a “complete” privatisation of the airline. According to the Civil Aviation Ministry, all options would be explored to revive the loss-making Air India. However, senior Air India officials say that airline has enough assets to back its debt and the government should not go for a “distress” sale or handover the airline to a private player on a platter.

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    Anandakrishnan
    Jun 17, 2017 at 12:51 pm
    The merged airlines I.e. Air India has lot of assets which needs to be assessed based on market value. If the valuation is more than half of the liabilities, then govt. should rethink privatisation. What needs to be done is make professionals run it without interference. Avoid bureaucrats running it and avoid appointing retd. Air Indians as CEOs of the subsidiaries. Let professionals run with a view to make profit. Let the professionals hire and fire employees based on performance. Let all unwanted baggage be thrown out. Privatisation is not the only solution.
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      Paban
      Jun 17, 2017 at 9:24 am
      Instead of selling AI, we may think of PPP in some sectors and explore possibilities of making AI a profit making industry.
      Reply
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        Tuticorin sundararajan
        Jun 17, 2017 at 7:45 am
        Government is making a big mistake in selling AirIndia.Sharad pawar and Praful patel are mainly responsible for the downfall of AI.Merger was a bad idea.Even now it is not late.Segregate domestic and international under one en y and run both the Airlines. Route rationalisation is must and train more pilots and freeze Aircraft orders.Presently good uplifted from New York is below any standards.Review all contracts and save money on food uplift.Stop subsidised flights and Govt should settle bills for vvip flights.Request banks to convert loans as equity and may be go public and raise capital
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          M P
          Jun 16, 2017 at 11:38 pm
          I totally disagree with Swamy's explanation. Privatisation is a sign of progress. As the country develops, many of the Government undertakings were privatised, it is Build, Own and transfer policy.Swamy being a leading Economist, should appreciate the development. Comparison of ISRO with AI is unfair as the former is service sector and latter come under strategic and security sector.
          Reply
          1. Durai Emakutti
            Jun 16, 2017 at 10:38 pm
            Su. Swamy is a classical simpleton in that what he speaks of what he thinks
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              Subir Kumar Roy
              Jun 16, 2017 at 2:21 pm
              Most unbiased and logical opinion from a versatile political person....very timely and this will surely annoy ministers with vested interest in trying to sell Air India.
              Reply
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                Sabra
                Jun 16, 2017 at 6:28 pm
                Shri Swamy deserves to be praised for his objective view. He is a rare politician who has values. In terms of quality of service, Air India can compare with private operators and in fact better than many Indian and foreign operators. There should not be privatisation for the sake of privatisation. The Niti Aayog view seems to be subjective, pro-corporate and flawed. Indians can find hope in Shri Swamy for airing independent views free from biases and extraneous agenda.
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                mahesh
                Jun 16, 2017 at 3:13 am
                cannot compare airindia to ISRO.
                Reply
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