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Air India has a sentimental value for the country: Gadkari

Discussion in 'International Relations' started by Hindustani78, May 31, 2018.

  1. Hindustani78

    Hindustani78 Lieutenant FULL MEMBER

    Nov 20, 2017
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    Air India has a sentimental value for the country: Gadkari

    NEW DELHI, May 31, 2018 11:48 IST
    Updated: May 31, 2018 11:49 IST

    Air India carries a sentimental value for the country, Union Minister Nitin Gadkari said on Wednesday on why the government intends to retain 24% stake after the privatisation of the national carrier instead of making a complete exit.

    His comment assumes significance as it comes a day before the deadline for interested players to submit their bids for Air India’s stake sale expires on May 31, i.e. today, and it is learnt that no one has come forward to formally submit an expression of interest yet.

    The Centre’s decision to hold 24% stake in the national carrier, pass on a debt of ₹33,392 crore to the new owner as well as the huge number of Air India employees have proved to be deterrents for private players to participate in the disinvestment process.

    “Air India has a sentimental value for the country (Air India ke saath desh ki ek bhavna judi hui hai). That is why 51% stake will be with a company owned by an Indian citizen. Apart from that, we will keep 24% stake and a foreign player can buy the remaining share,” Nitin Gadkari told The Hindu.

    Mr. Gadkari is among the four ministers who are part of the Air India Specific Alternative Mechanism constituted to chalk out a strategy for the privatisation of the national carrier.

    Civil Aviation Secretary R.N. Choubey told reporters, “There have not been any bids received so far. We expect (a) good response before bid closure on Thursday.”

    Last week, Mr. Choubey told reporters that the government will not sell Air India if it doesn’t get the right price for the airline.

    In March, the government made public the broad contours of Air India’s stake sale and invited bids. It proposed to sell 76% of Air India along with low-cost subsidiary Air India Express and a 50% stake in AISATS, a ground-handling joint venture with Singapore Airport Terminal Services, as a single entity.

    The Centre intended to announce the qualified bidders by June 15, identify a successful player by August end and complete the sale of Air India by the end of this calendar year.

    Union Minister for Roads and Highways Nitin Gadkari counselled upset NDA partner Shiv Sena to be mindful of the changed ground situation in Maharashtra regarding the relative strengths of the BJP and the Sena. "At one point of time we (BJP) were in a secondary role, then we fought the Assembly elections separately and got more seats than them. They, now being the junior partner, cannot expect that we will give them the top spot. Politics is a game of compulsions, limitations and contradictions and everyone has to understand that," he said.

  2. Satendra kumar

    Satendra kumar FULL MEMBER

    Apr 18, 2017
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    I suppose Air India has been Jewel of the skies named as (Maharaja),I think it is very sentiment for the Airlines to go in foreign control.If Indian private companies can revive the companies performance than Minister Nitin Gadkari's calculation must be correct. at least 24% shares will remain with government.

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