Sydney, 23 June, 2018
Government of India (GOI) tried to sell the loss making national carrier Air India (AI) recently, but nobody was willing to bid, due to the attached conditions for the sale.
Sale of AI has failed before too.
GOI under PM Narendra Modi has many business-friendly policies. AI is the national carrier. AI is and has always been under bureaucratic stranglehold, which has stifled its productivity and efficiency, and damaged its brand. Over the recent years, some serious efforts were made to change the situation, but the success has only been partial.
I travel with AI as my preferred airline. I have travelled economy and business class, and have found its services pleasant and comfortable.
Syd-Del-Syd is a profit making sector for AI, with 85%+ occupancy. AI is preferred by quite a lot of Indians in this sector. Non-stop flight is just one of them, but food and language are no less important. Contribution of people like myself in promoting AI has not been insignificant. Our contribution could even be better, if AI listens to the diaspora, instead of working with prefixed views and “I know everything” attitude.
In my view, GOI should prove its business-friendly credentials by appointing a board, with people, who have impeccable records to run successful businesses, and dismantle the bureaucratic stranglehold.
Sale of Air India is one option, and perhaps an easier option, but a better option is to turn around the business of running AIr India.
Air India deserves nothing less.
After all, it is our national Airline.
It should be a matter of pride for Indians all over the world to see a successful Air India.
Dr Yadu Singh