Senior IAS officer Pradeep Singh Kharola has assumed charge as the Chairman and Managing Director of Air India today. Kharola, a Karnataka cadre officer, replaced Rajiv Bansal. Bansal had served as the interim CMD for a little over three months. Kharola was the Managing Director of Bangalore Metro Rail Corporation Ltd. The change of guard at the helm of Air India also comes at a time when the government is in the process of finalising the modalities of the strategic disinvestment of the national carrier. In late August, then incumbent Ashwani Lohani, a 1980-batch Indian Railway Service of Mechanical Engineers officer, was posted back to his parent organisation as Chairman, Railway Board. Rajiv Bansal, a Nagaland cadre IAS officer, who is also additional secretary in the Petroleum Ministry, was appointed as interim AI chief. The formalities regarding Kharola’s relieving order from his current position in the Karnataka government were completed
Kharola is a 1985 batch Karnataka cadre Indian Administrative Service (IAS) officer.
Pradeep Singh Kharola hails from Dehradun, Uttarakhand. He was born on Spetember 15, 1961.
In 2015, Pradeep Singh Kharola was given additional charge of the post of additional chief secretary to tourism department, government of Karnataka.
Kharola held the post of the chairman of Karnataka Urban Infrastructure Development and Finance Corporation in 2013.
Kharola was managing director of Bangalore Metropolitan Transport Corporation when it was formed in 1997. He was also the managing director of the Karnataka State Road Transport Corporation. He was on Central deputation between 2001 and 2009 and on his return, he held, among others, the post of Principal Secretary to Chief Minister (Jagadish Shettar).
In 2008 Kharola wrote the article for Economic and Political Weekly, titled Urban Public Transport Systems: Are the Taxation Policies Congenial for Their Survival and Growth? This article analyses the different levies on the operation of buses in a city and also attempted to compare these in different states in the country.
Addressing a group of investors at the Invest Karnataka 2016 meet, He said “in many countries, including Honk Kong, metro stations are part of huge buildings. We too are contemplating to develop a similar commercial model for the next phases.”
In July 2017 Kharola replied to Kannada Development Authority’s letter asking to remove Hindi in Namma Metro sign boards, stating that it is inevitable to use Hindi in Metro boards, following the three-language formula.