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PM Considering Privatising Air India
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Aseem
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PostPosted: Wed May 31, 2017 5:49 pm    Post subject: PM Considering Privatising Air India Reply with quote

enough to warrant a new thread

Quote:
PM Modi Said To Be Considering Privatising Air India
Prime Minister Narendra Modi is actively considering a proposal to privatise state-run Air India Ltd., possibly asking the buyer to absorb loans of about 200 billion rupees ($3.1 billion) linked to aircraft purchases, a person with direct knowledge of the matter said.

The deliberations follow recommendations by a government panel for the sale of the money-losing carrier that has nearly $8 billion in debt, the person said, asking not to be identified because the discussions are private. As for the rest of the flag carrier's debt, the government has yet to decide whether to write off or reorganize it, the person said.

The process may include disposing of Air India's real-estate and other non-core assets worth about $3 billion before the sale or hiving them off, the person said. Air India spokesman Dhananjay Kumar and a spokesman for PM Modi didn't immediately respond to requests for comments.

Unprofitable for a decade with taxpayers bailing it out in the past six years, Air India's appeal to any investor is contingent on the government's ability to write off the debt not backed by assets. That is a political call PM Modi needs to take at a time when many of the nation's state-run lenders have been seeking capital injection from taxpayer funds amid mounting bad loans.


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PostPosted: Wed May 31, 2017 7:03 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

If he can pull this and other similar things off, Modi will go down in history as the greatest PM India ever had.

But the Congress and Left Wing tossers won't give up without a fight.
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Jaysit
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PostPosted: Wed May 31, 2017 8:09 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The_Goat wrote:
If he can pull this and other similar things off, Modi will go down in history as the greatest PM India ever had.

But the Congress and Left Wing tossers won't give up without a fight.


Using AI as a cash cow goes beyond politics and ideology. The last time I checked, the BJP and Right Wing tossers were just as complicit in the giant taxpayer funded pocket-lining endeavor that is AI.

The big question, however, isn't whether Modi is great or left wing tossers need their collective asses kicked, but who in their right mind will purchase AI with its massive debt, history of labor unrest, and vested interests who aren't going away even if the airline were to be privatized.
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sabya99
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PostPosted: Wed May 31, 2017 8:51 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

If AI is privatized, will it be a BOM/DEL centric international airline like Jet Airways? Who will substitute the job of erstwhile Indian Airlines and feeder airlines? Will the new airliner participate in evacuation of Indian nationals and desi folks at the time of crisis? Will it subsidize for Haj and other religious occasions? Will MCA dictate terms for flight departure and arrival points? Will govt. babus and bibis get subsidized trips in the new airline? I agree that no country could subsidize national airlines forever May be more reorganization of domestic airliners industry including LCC inevitable!
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Jaysit
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PostPosted: Wed May 31, 2017 9:42 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

sabya99 wrote:
If AI is privatized, will it be a BOM/DEL centric international airline like Jet Airways? Who will substitute the job of erstwhile Indian Airlines and feeder airlines? Will the new airliner participate in evacuation of Indian nationals and desi folks at the time of crisis? Will it subsidize for Haj and other religious occasions? Will MCA dictate terms for flight departure and arrival points? Will govt. babus and bibis get subsidized trips in the new airline? I agree that no country could subsidize national airlines forever May be more reorganization of domestic airliners industry including LCC inevitable!


All good questions for which there are likely no answers.
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PostPosted: Wed May 31, 2017 11:40 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hopefully QR/ Qatar are the investors and the Indian tax payer can breathe a sigh of relief that the debt is now Qatar's problem Twisted Evil
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PostPosted: Fri Jun 02, 2017 6:59 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

very well said, The_Goat, Sanjay and Dr.Ganguly. Your points completely describe three different angles to the problem, beautifully.
Nimish wrote:
Hopefully QR/ Qatar are the investors and the Indian tax payer can breathe a sigh of relief that the debt is now Qatar's problem Twisted Evil
I am sure Nimish, you said this in jest. I do not see any chance of this happening. A tiny point in this is QR's OW & AI's *A.
Cheers, Sumantra.
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Nimish
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PostPosted: Mon Jun 05, 2017 1:35 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

sumantra wrote:
Nimish wrote:
Hopefully QR/ Qatar are the investors and the Indian tax payer can breathe a sigh of relief that the debt is now Qatar's problem Twisted Evil
I am sure Nimish, you said this in jest. I do not see any chance of this happening. A tiny point in this is QR's OW & AI's *A.
Cheers, Sumantra.


Not really in jest Sumantra. There are enough statements that QR is looking desperately to grow in India. And that the govt is desperate to offload AI. I would hope that the 2 needs can be matched. As to OW vs *A - those can be changed over the years it will take for any such deal to materialise.
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sumantra
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PostPosted: Mon Jun 05, 2017 1:47 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Nimish wrote:
Not really in jest Sumantra. There are enough statements that QR is looking desperately to grow in India. And that the govt is desperate to offload AI. I would hope that the 2 needs can be matched. As to OW vs *A - those can be changed over the years it will take for any such deal to materialise.
Hmm...AI has brand value, and their current team and performance is better than anything since the heady 1970s, when the airline went down. However that debt: anything else aside, QR will not want to pick anything of the sort up. They are more interested in the current smartest airline and best performer, Indigo. I am not too sure they would want another start-up in the current climate, even though barrel prices may be low. Vistara with its deep-pocketed promoters is barely there. In the current climate, even if it were for deep-rooted reasons, I am not too sure if the Tatas would take in Air India, even if the Govt offered it. That debt, again.
Cheers, Sumantra.
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Aseem
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PostPosted: Fri Jun 09, 2017 10:41 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
Exclusive Air India privatisation blueprint: The great maharajah makeover

"We want Air India to be a global airlines and are moving as quickly as we can" ,said Jayant Sinha, MoS Civil Aviation.

In its boldest move yet the Narendra Modi government has decided to privatise the 52,000 cr debt laden national carrier the Air India. A decision that will raise the hackles of trade unions and Left parties who have managed to block disinvestment in the airline sector for over 25 years.
But now the government has swung into action with its think tank Niti Aayog mapping the blueprint for the sale of Maharaja. It took Niti Aayog just 15 days to draft the Air India privatization report.
"We did recommendation on Air India in just 15 days time, it was very clear from its analysis and statistics of its financial performance, it was very clear that it will do better if you structure it with a private partner", revealed Amitabh Kant, Niti Aayog CEO to India Today.

Niti Aayog has made a strong argument to put national carrier on the sale bloc and divert the funds used to subsidize it for education and health sector needs in its fourth report to the PMO.
"Our belief is that government is very good at somethings and pathetic at other things. It should get out of areas where its very bad and it should take out resources which are not in productive area should be taken out. There is no rationale of government to put money into an airline which is just taking 14% of market share. Private sector has done pretty well and our analysis showed that resources required are huge and they need to be put in education and health.", asks Amitabh Kant, Niti Aayog CEO.


India Today

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Aseem
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PostPosted: Sun Jun 11, 2017 3:19 am    Post subject: Reply with quote



Source India Today

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Jaysit
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PostPosted: Mon Jun 12, 2017 11:52 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Rs. 52,000 crores is about US $8 BILLION.

Who on earth will take on this kind of debt?
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PostPosted: Mon Jun 19, 2017 1:26 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

This seems to be happening already:
https://swarajyamag.com/insta/cabinet-likely-to-clear-stake-sale-in-air-india-this-week-report

Personally, I think it is a bad move for governments to exit their flagship airline. Transport sectors like road construction, railways and airlines are too critical to be left *completely* to commercial interests. Sure, there should be commercial players, but these elements of infrastructure are necessary for protecting national interests as well.

While AI may have been misused in some ill-conceived uses, it has also played critical roles in protecting and rescuing citizens from riots, natural calamities and other forms of crises. I don't mind my tax rupees to be used for such humanitarian purposes.

Also, with the UDAN program on the horizon, AI can greatly increase its operating revenues, by literally becoming the airline for Indians. The UDAN program can greatly pull up the economy by empowering a large segment of the population to travel and expand their businesses like never before.

A purely private operator would be least bothered about the positive ripple effects of the airline's operation on the economy and society. They would be solely interested in their immediate profits.

Also, Indianness is largely viewed with contempt in the airline industry. Indian IFE is limited to Bollywood and Indian classical music and art hardly ever makes it to the skies. Air India is the only place where Indianness can take wings -- only if the people's representative also run the airline.
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PostPosted: Mon Jun 19, 2017 4:54 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

flightgearpilot wrote:
This seems to be happening already:
https://swarajyamag.com/insta/cabinet-likely-to-clear-stake-sale-in-air-india-this-week-report

Personally, I think it is a bad move for governments to exit their flagship airline. Transport sectors like road construction, railways and airlines are too critical to be left *completely* to commercial interests. Sure, there should be commercial players, but these elements of infrastructure are necessary for protecting national interests as well.

While AI may have been misused in some ill-conceived uses, it has also played critical roles in protecting and rescuing citizens from riots, natural calamities and other forms of crises. I don't mind my tax rupees to be used for such humanitarian purposes.


The railways and road transport need to be heavily subdidized so that India's poor can be provided with affordable transportation. So there is a case for the government maintaining control over these. I don't see why AI should be subsidized or controlled by the government.

As for providing airlift during emergencies, doesn't the aviation act actually empower the government to commandeer any Indian registered aircraft, even if privately owned, in the event of emergencies? So why should the government maintain AI only for this? The government will have access to AI's planes if required, even if they are privately owned.



fightergearpilot wrote:

Also, Indianness is largely viewed with contempt in the airline industry. Indian IFE is limited to Bollywood and Indian classical music and art hardly ever makes it to the skies. Air India is the only place where Indianness can take wings -- only if the people's representative also run the airline.


Says who? Have you travelled recently?

Almost every US, European, Gulf and Far East based carrier worth its name offers Indian vegetarian meals and Bollywood movies on its flights. Almost all of them also have at least a few Indian crew members on flights to India. The likes of BA, EK and LH even make announcements in regional languages like Telugu and Tamil on flights to Indian destinations where these languages are spoken. The BOM/DEL fixated AI and 9W still stick to (often bad) English and (sometimes bad) Hindi.

Indianness is well and truly accepted all over the world. AI if anything, is way behind the others.
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PostPosted: Mon Jun 19, 2017 5:32 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The_Goat wrote:

The railways and road transport need to be heavily subdidized so that India's poor can be provided with affordable transportation. So there is a case for the government maintaining control over these. I don't see why AI should be subsidized or controlled by the government.


I'm not talking about subsidizing, but holding stake so they can steer in specific directions.

The_Goat wrote:

As for providing airlift during emergencies, doesn't the aviation act actually empower the government to commandeer any Indian registered aircraft, even if privately owned, in the event of emergencies? So why should the government maintain AI only for this? The government will have access to AI's planes if required, even if they are privately owned.


With a carrier like AI that can be used for this purpose, the obligation on other carriers reduces, thus giving them a better playing ground.

The Goat wrote:

Says who? Have you travelled recently?

Almost every US, European, Gulf and Far East based carrier worth its name offers Indian vegetarian meals and Bollywood movies on its flights. Almost all of them also have at least a few Indian crew members on flights to India. The likes of BA, EK and LH even make announcements in regional languages like Telugu and Tamil on flights to Indian destinations where these languages are spoken. The BOM/DEL fixated AI and 9W still stick to (often bad) English and (sometimes bad) Hindi.


I've very much travelled recently and here is the benchmark I have. AI so far, is the only airline that have Kannada movies on board. Most other airlines confuse Kannada for Canada. Laughing

Sure, Indianness is gaining more acceptance, but with a national carrier we can in principle, demand it to be that way as the public holds a stake in the carrier.
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PostPosted: Mon Jun 19, 2017 6:53 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The_Goat wrote:
flightgearpilot wrote:
This seems to be happening already:
https://swarajyamag.com/insta/cabinet-likely-to-clear-stake-sale-in-air-india-this-week-report

Personally, I think it is a bad move for governments to exit their flagship airline. Transport sectors like road construction, railways and airlines are too critical to be left *completely* to commercial interests. Sure, there should be commercial players, but these elements of infrastructure are necessary for protecting national interests as well.

While AI may have been misused in some ill-conceived uses, it has also played critical roles in protecting and rescuing citizens from riots, natural calamities and other forms of crises. I don't mind my tax rupees to be used for such humanitarian purposes.


The railways and road transport need to be heavily subdidized so that India's poor can be provided with affordable transportation. So there is a case for the government maintaining control over these. I don't see why AI should be subsidized or controlled by the government.

As for providing airlift during emergencies, doesn't the aviation act actually empower the government to commandeer any Indian registered aircraft, even if privately owned, in the event of emergencies? So why should the government maintain AI only for this? The government will have access to AI's planes if required, even if they are privately owned.



fightergearpilot wrote:

Also, Indianness is largely viewed with contempt in the airline industry. Indian IFE is limited to Bollywood and Indian classical music and art hardly ever makes it to the skies. Air India is the only place where Indianness can take wings -- only if the people's representative also run the airline.


Says who? Have you travelled recently?

Almost every US, European, Gulf and Far East based carrier worth its name offers Indian vegetarian meals and Bollywood movies on its flights. Almost all of them also have at least a few Indian crew members on flights to India. The likes of BA, EK and LH even make announcements in regional languages like Telugu and Tamil on flights to Indian destinations where these languages are spoken. The BOM/DEL fixated AI and 9W still stick to (often bad) English and (sometimes bad) Hindi.

Indianness is well and truly accepted all over the world. AI if anything, is way behind the others.


I mean once again we go back to BOM/DEL thing. Look AF focuses on Paris, BA on London etc. BOM/DEL are the primary premium destinations in India (meaning they have the corporate head offices that allow people to fly J. Its no accident that airlines focus on them. If BOM had more space many more connecting pax would flow through BOM as well (lucky for other cities, this traffic is pushed to them). That said, why does every thing have to be about regionalism and a conspiracy - its just business. AF doesn't do Hindi announcements out of BOM (surprising to me). They feel that mostly all pax speak English (again not saying I agree). AI probably makes regional language announcements on Gulf routes given the type of pax. If you want Telegu announcements with Telegu movies and Telegu food fly another airline. Most Telegu people I know are happy to eat their saag panner / butter chicken just as most North Indians gladly eat the South Indian breakfasts most airlines serve out of India.
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PostPosted: Mon Jun 19, 2017 7:37 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Caliguy wrote:
[

I mean once again we go back to BOM/DEL thing. Look AF focuses on Paris, BA on London etc. BOM/DEL are the primary premium destinations in India (meaning they have the corporate head offices that allow people to fly J. Its no accident that airlines focus on them. If BOM had more space many more connecting pax would flow through BOM as well (lucky for other cities, this traffic is pushed to them). That said, why does every thing have to be about regionalism and a conspiracy - its just business. AF doesn't do Hindi announcements out of BOM (surprising to me). They feel that mostly all pax speak English (again not saying I agree). AI probably makes regional language announcements on Gulf routes given the type of pax. If you want Telegu announcements with Telegu movies and Telegu food fly another airline. Most Telegu people I know are happy to eat their saag panner / butter chicken just as most North Indians gladly eat the South Indian breakfasts most airlines serve out of India.


I was merely refuting fightergearpilot's allegation that Indianness is scorned upon in aviaition circles, and not in any way talking about regionalism, BOM and DEL.

And I don't see why any airline should not offer Telugu or any other type of movies or food, if adequate passengers demand it. It is merely providing for customer satisfaction, something any well run business should be doing. The attitude of ' If you want Telegu announcements with Telegu movies and Telegu food fly another airline' reeks of GoI style arrogance. It is one of the big reasons why AI lost much its market to other foreign carriers.

And by the way, if your AF stewardess speaks to you in bad French accented English on your flight to India and serves you the Indian meal you ordered instead of Ecargots and Proc ŗ la Dijonaisse, it only shows that even AF has shed its French arrogance an learned the ABCs of customer satisfaction. If they had not done it, they would have gone out of business a long time ago.
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Jaysit
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PostPosted: Mon Jun 19, 2017 7:41 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Air India is in the business of transporting Person X from Point A to Point B safely and in reasonable comfort, not providing Assamese, Telugu, Jain, Oriya delicacies onboard. It's not a bloody restaurant.

If you have to watch a Kannadiga or Sindhi or Rajasthani film over Himachali samosas, bring your own films on your iPad, and get your aunty to fry up your own special flavor of samosa.

Or start your own damned airline.

Air France provides French food onboard that appeals to a wide swath of its French passengers, not necessarily regional specialties from the Alsace, Basque country, Provence, etc., etc., to appeal to everyone's finicky demands.
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PostPosted: Mon Jun 19, 2017 11:50 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Jaysit wrote:
Air India is in the business of transporting Person X from Point A to Point B safely and in reasonable comfort, not providing Assamese, Telugu, Jain, Oriya delicacies onboard. It's not a bloody restaurant.

If you have to watch a Kannadiga or Sindhi or Rajasthani film over Himachali samosas, bring your own films on your iPad, and get your aunty to fry up your own special flavor of samosa.

Or start your own damned airline.

Air France provides French food onboard that appeals to a wide swath of its French passengers, not necessarily regional specialties from the Alsace, Basque country, Provence, etc., etc., to appeal to everyone's finicky demands.


I agree that it is unreasonable, impossible even, to cater to everyone's whims. But that does not mean that innovative schemes should not be brought out to attract passengers belonging to a certain community or ones with a particular dietary preference, particularly if they happen to be moneybags.

Jet Airways for instance, was probably the first airline to introduce the jain meal. The result? It became the airline of choice for rich Gujju and Jain businessmen. Now every other airline has followed suit.

In in this day and age, if an FSC like Air India believes that it is primarily ' in the business of transporting person X from point A to point B in reasonable comfort, all else be damned', then that is the biggest reason why it should either be shut down or privatized.

Surely, you of all people Jay, should agree that flying is more than just 'going safely from A to B '.

And by the way, AF does do regional French cuisine quite often. One of the best Boeuf Bourguignons I have had was on a Paris-Boston AF flight.
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Jaysit
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 20, 2017 12:06 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

The_Goat wrote:
Jaysit wrote:
Air India is in the business of transporting Person X from Point A to Point B safely and in reasonable comfort, not providing Assamese, Telugu, Jain, Oriya delicacies onboard. It's not a bloody restaurant.

If you have to watch a Kannadiga or Sindhi or Rajasthani film over Himachali samosas, bring your own films on your iPad, and get your aunty to fry up your own special flavor of samosa.

Or start your own damned airline.

Air France provides French food onboard that appeals to a wide swath of its French passengers, not necessarily regional specialties from the Alsace, Basque country, Provence, etc., etc., to appeal to everyone's finicky demands.


I agree that it is unreasonable, impossible even, to cater to everyone's whims. But that does not mean that innovative schemes should not be brought out to attract passengers belonging to a certain community or ones with a particular dietary preference, particularly if they happen to be moneybags.

Jet Airways for instance, was probably the first airline to introduce the jain meal. The result? It became the airline of choice for rich Gujju and Jain businessmen. Now every other airline has followed suit.

In in this day and age, if an FSC like Air India believes that it is primarily ' in the business of transporting person X from point A to point B in reasonable comfort, all else be damned', then that is the biggest reason why it should either be shut down or privatized.

Surely, you of all people Jay, should agree that flying is more than just 'going safely from A to B '.

And by the way, AF does do regional French cuisine quite often. One of the best Boeuf Bourguignons I have had was on a Paris-Boston AF flight.


Boeuf Bourguignon is hardly regional French cuisine anymore. It's part of the pan-French culinary experience in the same way that chicken tikka masala or bhindi masala or masala dosa are to Indian food. And AI, to their credit, serve dosas as a vegetarian breakfast option even in Y. They're under no compunction to cater the spicing to the specific tastes of some community in Telangana or Tiruchirappalli. We're talking mass market catering here in a metal tube for 350 people.

Plus, Air India DOES offer a whole range of culinary choices including Jain, Halal, and Kosher which come with religious strictures (no garlic, onions, potatoes for Jain food, for instance). As for Jains and Gujjus preferring Jet over AI because of Jain offerings, please, just check every EWR and LHR bound flight from BOM and AMD. It's not as if AI is wanting for the Gujju market. The only reason a lot of Gujjus our of BOM prefer Jet over AI is because MOST people in and out of BOM prefer Jet over AI - more frequencies, clean, well-maintained aircraft, and on-time departures.
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 20, 2017 7:33 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Jaysit wrote:
...The only reason a lot of Gujjus our of BOM prefer Jet over AI is because MOST people in and out of BOM prefer Jet over AI - more frequencies, clean, well-maintained aircraft, and on-time departures.
Sorry to nitpick Sanjay: the only reason that the AI 191/144 BOM-CDG-EWR and vice versa did well for Air India even in its darkest days (it was the only flight then, that made good money) was due to the Gujarati patronage.
The_Goat: IC had Jain meals way back in time, as well, in the days of paper tickets. I clearly remember at least one such instance. It is just that the travel agent had to make a suitable request on the booking.
Cheers, Sumantra.
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 20, 2017 9:05 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

sumantra wrote:
Sorry to nitpick Sanjay: the only reason that the AI 191/144 BOM-CDG-EWR and vice versa did well for Air India even in its darkest days (it was the only flight then, that made good money) was due to the Gujarati patronage.
.


Uhh, that's what I just said, didn't I? AI has never had any problem attracting Gujjus of any stripe - Hindu, Jain, Muslim, atheist, etc. To the extent that Gujjus of a certain set prefer Jet is because most people prefer Jet (inflight service, clean AC, etc). But given the price and the nonstop convenience AI provides, AI has never had a problem with anyone, and they sure as hell don't need to be a flying restaurant catering to every 1,767,897 of India's ethnicities. They provide a pan-Indian culinary experience with respectable nods to religious dietary restrictions. The End.
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 20, 2017 9:19 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Foods of AI191 are reasonably good compared to US airlines. But AI191 is popular because of its Newark base. Remember NJ is home to more than half million desis and Phili also putting pressure on this airport. People donít like to travel all the way to JFK, although it is cheaper to fly from there.
Many strict vegetarians carry their own food in stainless steel tiffin boxes. Food is the least important issue in determining AI future. GOI should also decide how to decentralize the service across the subcontinent rather than centralizing to BOM/DEL otherwise AI might become another Jet like airlines. Extreme parochial views at MCA helped ME3 airlines take foot hold in desi airports. I donít know whether it is good or bad in the long run!
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 20, 2017 9:39 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Jaysit wrote:
Uhh, that's what I just said, didn't I? AI has never had any problem attracting Gujjus of any stripe - Hindu, Jain, Muslim, atheist, etc. To the extent that Gujjus of a certain set prefer Jet is because most people prefer Jet (inflight service, clean AC, etc). But given the price and the nonstop convenience AI provides, AI has never had a problem with anyone, and they sure as hell don't need to be a flying restaurant catering to every 1,767,897 of India's ethnicities. They provide a pan-Indian culinary experience with respectable nods to religious dietary restrictions. The End.
That is correct: your earlier post seemed to indicate that Gujaratis would prefer Jet to AI, you have clarified that a certain set of Gujaratis would, but Gujaratis would have no issues with flocking to AI in droves as well. True!
Cheers, Sumantra.
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Jaysit
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 20, 2017 11:54 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

sabya99 wrote:
Foods of AI191 are reasonably good compared to US airlines. But AI191 is popular because of its Newark base. Remember NJ is home to more than half million desis and Phili also putting pressure on this airport. People donít like to travel all the way to JFK, although it is cheaper to fly from there.
Many strict vegetarians carry their own food in stainless steel tiffin boxes. Food is the least important issue in determining AI future. GOI should also decide how to decentralize the service across the subcontinent rather than centralizing to BOM/DEL otherwise AI might become another Jet like airlines. Extreme parochial views at MCA helped ME3 airlines take foot hold in desi airports. I donít know whether it is good or bad in the long run!


A hub and spoke model is essential for any airline to serve global destinations, and AI has done a rather good job of that. Some markets (BOM-LHR/EWR/DXB, COK-Gulf, etc.) can support direct point to point services, but for most long haul routes, AI's DEL hub serves the Indian subcontinent very well. Jet has been stymied by slot constraints at BOM in establishing a viable hub and spoke model like AI did in DEL, and that's why it's using AMS and AUH as alternate hubs. AI is no danger of turning into Jet. It's business model is a tried and true one.
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iah87
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 21, 2017 7:14 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

sabya99 wrote:
GOI should also decide how to decentralize the service across the subcontinent rather than centralizing to BOM/DEL otherwise AI might become another Jet like airlines. Extreme parochial views at MCA helped ME3 airlines take foot hold in desi airports. I donít know whether it is good or bad in the long run!


Decentralization is not going to work for AI in India with vastly different traffic patterns. CCU/HYD/MAA to LHR will not work as there is insufficient O & D traffic including premium traffic. BA or other foreign carriers make it work since they offer good connecting traffic at their bases. For example, AI would save fuel and money if they offer flight from CCU to HKG or Tokyo but obviously with DEL as base they are able sustain the flight and with CCU they cannot.

I think what AI is doing is ideal, solidifying DEL as the base and feeding traffic from all over India, plus the advantage of both domestic and international flights in the same terminal is making it easier. Even to this day, many want to avoid DEL or BOM as the transfer city in the mistaken belief that they have to change terminals (which is true if you are using Indigo or Spice jet).
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 21, 2017 8:11 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

something not very hard to imagine

Tatas may buy debt-ridden Air India in partnership with Singapore Airlines: Report

VT-ASJ
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 21, 2017 11:06 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Aseem wrote:
something not very hard to imagine

Tatas may buy debt-ridden Air India in partnership with Singapore Airlines: Report

VT-ASJ


If this deal were ever to fall through would it mean that Vistara would cease to exist and their fleet would be merged with AI or will AI and vistara continue to exist side by side having the same owners.
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PostPosted: Thu Jun 22, 2017 5:18 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

harshwcam3 wrote:
Aseem wrote:
something not very hard to imagine

Tatas may buy debt-ridden Air India in partnership with Singapore Airlines: Report

VT-ASJ


If this deal were ever to fall through would it mean that Vistara would cease to exist and their fleet would be merged with AI or will AI and vistara continue to exist side by side having the same owners.


It would be a mess for Tata - Air India, Vistara, AirAsia India, Air India Express, Alliance Air and Taj Air...
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PostPosted: Thu Jun 22, 2017 3:30 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

AI will never be privatized. Period

The mantri-babu brigade, the thugs in the unions, and other associated leeches will never allow the gravy train to slip from their hands, Modi or no Modi.

I will believe it if I see it. And I probably won't.
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sabya99
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PostPosted: Fri Jun 23, 2017 12:52 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I admit hub and spoke arrangement is very effective/ cost effective in Indian context, but DEL air space is getting saturated and BOM is completely saturated. One cannot built a JFK or DFW in the middle of Indiaís capital. If you want to compete effectively with ME3 airlines, multiple entry point must be developed across the subcontinent. Desi airlines should be allowed to have more international flights from these exit points there by reducing dependence on DEL or BOM. But MCA is bent on creating artificial crisis by overcrowding one or two major airports. These people are so biased that they will accepts ME3 taking away a major chunk of passengers than developing airports like CCU. Yes AAI has developed NSCBI airport but more needs to be done !
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Jaysit
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PostPosted: Fri Jun 23, 2017 1:25 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

sabya99 wrote:
I admit hub and spoke arrangement is very effective/ cost effective in Indian context, but DEL air space is getting saturated and BOM is completely saturated. One cannot built a JFK or DFW in the middle of Indiaís capital. If you want to compete effectively with ME3 airlines, multiple entry point must be developed across the subcontinent. Desi airlines should be allowed to have more international flights from these exit points there by reducing dependence on DEL or BOM. But MCA is bent on creating artificial crisis by overcrowding one or two major airports. These people are so biased that they will accepts ME3 taking away a major chunk of passengers than developing airports like CCU. Yes AAI has developed NSCBI airport but more needs to be done !


CCU doesn't have enough O&D to sustain an international hub. Airlines like BA and LH and AI have tried and failed to maintain direct long haul flights out of CCU. It's not a question of biases, it's a question of demand.

And why can't you expand DEL? DEL has space for expansion, and the airspace above DEL right now sees but a fraction of the traffic that NYC with its 3 huge airports sees.

Besides, when Indian carriers see O&D markets out of cities that are not BOM or DEL, they're providing them. Jet just launched direct flights to CDG and AMS from MAA and BLR, and AI's flights to ORD and SFO technically start in HYD and BLR often with same plane service.

In summary, no one gives a rat's ass about CCU, because the traffic doesn't support expansion there.
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The_Goat
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PostPosted: Fri Jun 23, 2017 5:35 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

sabya99 wrote:
I admit hub and spoke arrangement is very effective/ cost effective in Indian context, but DEL air space is getting saturated and BOM is completely saturated. One cannot built a JFK or DFW in the middle of Indiaís capital. If you want to compete effectively with ME3 airlines, multiple entry point must be developed across the subcontinent. Desi airlines should be allowed to have more international flights from these exit points there by reducing dependence on DEL or BOM. But MCA is bent on creating artificial crisis by overcrowding one or two major airports. These people are so biased that they will accepts ME3 taking away a major chunk of passengers than developing airports like CCU. Yes AAI has developed NSCBI airport but more needs to be done !


AI's Delhi hub seems to be working well now but it came in too late. Had the DEL hub been realized sometime in the late 1990s or early 2000s when international air travel from India really started booming, AI could have competed better with the Gulf carriers for the non DEL/BOM passengers.

The GoI brand efficiency in which the DEL hub was built and finalized allowed the Gulf carriers to position themselves very well in India at AI's expense.

9W could have done better, but they weren't allowed to fly abroad till 2004. In addition, they also had no say towards the improvement of their BOM hub, which used to be a mosquito infested and urine smelling dump before the new terminal came along.

CCU never had much international traffic. Even BA and LH ran away from there.
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PostPosted: Fri Jun 23, 2017 6:56 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The_Goat wrote:
sabya99 wrote:
I admit hub and spoke arrangement is very effective/ cost effective in Indian context, but DEL air space is getting saturated and BOM is completely saturated. One cannot built a JFK or DFW in the middle of Indiaís capital. If you want to compete effectively with ME3 airlines, multiple entry point must be developed across the subcontinent. Desi airlines should be allowed to have more international flights from these exit points there by reducing dependence on DEL or BOM. But MCA is bent on creating artificial crisis by overcrowding one or two major airports. These people are so biased that they will accepts ME3 taking away a major chunk of passengers than developing airports like CCU. Yes AAI has developed NSCBI airport but more needs to be done !


AI's Delhi hub seems to be working well now but it came in too late. Had the DEL hub been realized sometime in the late 1990s or early 2000s when international air travel from India really started booming, AI could have competed better with the Gulf carriers for the non DEL/BOM passengers.

The GoI brand efficiency in which the DEL hub was built and finalized allowed the Gulf carriers to position themselves very well in India at AI's expense.

9W could have done better, but they weren't allowed to fly abroad till 2004. In addition, they also had no say towards the improvement of their BOM hub, which used to be a mosquito infested and urine smelling dump before the new terminal came along.

CCU never had much international traffic. Even BA and LH ran away from there.


Too late, huh???? India is growing so quickly both in outbound and in bound aviation there is just no such thing as too late. Most people don't even remember what the old days were like. Plus even in mature markets like the US, people change airlines because of FF programs or new routes or personal changing travel needs. If I flew between NYC and BOM a lot, I would dump DL in a second in order to fly UA nonstop (so I would become Star for all travel). What India needs is exactly what Modi is doing - allow Indian aviation to mature. This means hold back on new seats to the ME3, cut stupid taxes and weird processes (like stamping baggage tags 100 times) and not allowing investment in aviation as a backdoor to bilaterals (the 9W/EY deal). Indian airlines need to continue to better their service, have fair and mutually beneficial partnerships (9W/DL) and learn how to use a FF program to discourage customers from using others (FF program of American carriers are doing a good job pushing people to their flights or JV flights).

Here's the best thing going for Indian aviation. In country after country, people prefer the local option (that doesn't mean all people). This benefits large source markets like US, China, India. Regardless of 9w/AI making announcements in Telegu, there are still enough people that would rather connect in their own country (DEL or yes even BOM) then connect or misconnect in places like AUH, DOH, DXB.
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PostPosted: Fri Jun 23, 2017 8:25 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

@ The Goat, I totally agree with you that AI DEL hub is a great success. I consider it one of the most comfortable airport I have visited (more than refurbished BOM). My point is GOI should try to develop airport across the subcontinent beyond the city of BOM and DEL. Then a natural dispersion of international traffic will take place without much fanfare. This will be beneficial for overall airlines industry. There is no need to draw any parochial reasons behind this logic which I would not respond. I still believe babus at MCA have in born idea that everything in Kolkata is dark , bleak, and hopeless! Here are some chronology of west bound flights from CCU.
1971: At the height of Bangladesh war airport was closed to civil traffic and used as a base for IAF. After the war it was used for POW evacuation. At this point GOI decided not to use Dum Dum airport for international traffic.
1972-79: Both BA and AI used to have flights from CCU. Aeroflot, occasionally SAS also used to have west bound flights from CCU. But for labor traffic to middle east ,people had to go to BOM which was a real pain.
1980s: East European airlines like JAT, TAROME used to have regular flights. BA stopped flights by 1987.
1990s: BA came back again after some negotiation, but KLM left the airport after four years. Aeroflot used to fly IL-86 to Moscow which was extended to LHR. Biman Bangladesh used to fly DC-10 from DAC, but picked up large number of passengers from Kolkata. AI infrequently used to fly to LHR, sometime on and off and then stopped completely.
2000s: Royal Brunei airlines used to operate here for 3-4 years then stopped flying. LH came to Kolkata for 2-3 years, then stopped flying for lack of real passengers ( business class? ). Around 2005 Middle eastern airlines got interested about CCU. But airport infra. were poor, no aerobridge available. Departure lounge was tiny. No arrival lounge. There was rumor that new terminal will be build. Emirates started its flight in 2007 with A330 initially five flights then daily. Soon other ME3 airlines started to fly. Today EK has 11 flights per week all by B777-300, Qatar has seven flights per week using B787 and Gulf has daily flights by A321. So in total 25 flights from almost no flights in 2006!! Definitely building of integrated terminal has contributed a lot.
I think if airports across Indian subcontinent (outside BOM/DEL) are developed such dispersion of traffic will take place spontaneously and all parts of the subcontinent will be benefitted and there will be no need to have any parochial excuse for under performance of any airport.
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PostPosted: Fri Jun 23, 2017 8:57 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

25 weekly international departures from CCU versus 120 and 100 per day from DEL and BOM respectively. If the market existed, you can bet that the Gulf carriers would pile on flights, instead they seek additional frequencies from BOM, DEL, COK, etc.

Airlines go where the traffic is. CCU isn't serving up long haul traffic like BLR and HYD and MAA, but there have been increases in regional traffic to SE Asia in keeping with such increases across all Indian markets.

And what happened in the 1960s and 70s is irrelevant now. Those were milk run flights back when Calcutta housed many large industrial conglomerates, HQs of foreign multinationals, and sent the first wave of Indian immigrants to the UK. Things have changed in 50 years. Centers of commerce in India moved West, South, and North.

I'm not sure what you're suggesting here. That the GOI further develop CCU? It has, and the airport is sized according to the expected traffic over the next 10+ years.
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 28, 2017 7:30 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

some movement forward

Air India to be on sale soon. Cabinet gives in-principle approval for disinvestment

Source : India Today

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PostPosted: Thu Jun 29, 2017 10:49 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

flightgearpilot wrote:
...

I've very much travelled recently and here is the benchmark I have. AI so far, is the only airline that have Kannada movies on board. Most other airlines confuse Kannada for Canada. Laughing

Sure, Indianness is gaining more acceptance, but with a national carrier we can in principle, demand it to be that way as the public holds a stake in the carrier.

...


I have travelled on EK extensively and can say with confidence that they have 5-6 kannada movies in their IFE, as I have watched them too Very Happy

Also, in EK, on India and US bound flights, India Vegetarian meal is a standard option (AVML). So unlike European carriers, they don't serve it as a special meal which you get first. They usually have vegetarian meal listed in the menu, and also announce before meal service that the vegetarian meal will be served with the regular cart service.

BA actually has crew members who can speak Kannada. In few of my BA flights, I have actually had them do announcements in Kannada, where as AI and Jet/Indigo limit themselves to Hindi and English.

With competition, all airlines are trying to appeal to Indian customers, so Indianization will be there by default.

My only wish was that Indian Airlines shouldn't have been merged with AI. But thats water under the bridge. IC was much better than AI, at least in my experience.
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PostPosted: Thu Jun 29, 2017 7:56 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

blrsea wrote:
flightgearpilot wrote:
...

I've very much travelled recently and here is the benchmark I have. AI so far, is the only airline that have Kannada movies on board. Most other airlines confuse Kannada for Canada. Laughing

Sure, Indianness is gaining more acceptance, but with a national carrier we can in principle, demand it to be that way as the public holds a stake in the carrier.

...


I have travelled on EK extensively and can say with confidence that they have 5-6 kannada movies in their IFE, as I have watched them too Very Happy

Also, in EK, on India and US bound flights, India Vegetarian meal is a standard option (AVML). So unlike European carriers, they don't serve it as a special meal which you get first. They usually have vegetarian meal listed in the menu, and also announce before meal service that the vegetarian meal will be served with the regular cart service.

BA actually has crew members who can speak Kannada. In few of my BA flights, I have actually had them do announcements in Kannada, where as AI and Jet/Indigo limit themselves to Hindi and English.

With competition, all airlines are trying to appeal to Indian customers, so Indianization will be there by default.

My only wish was that Indian Airlines shouldn't have been merged with AI. But thats water under the bridge. IC was much better than AI, at least in my experience.


The purpose of announcements in different languages is safety. It's not for an Indian feeling or ethnic pride. Also its about the languages spoken by the pax not generally spoken in the State. So flights from BOM don't have Marathi announcements because 90%+ of the pax flying speak either English or Hindi (AF doesn't even do Hindi thinking everyone speaks English). Flights to the Gulf should have more regional language announcements because of the type of pax that fly those routes (hence EK's announcements and I am sure AI, 9W to the Gulf). Flights from BLR to say AMS probably only need English and Hindi. BLR is very cosmopolitan, and the pax flying to the EU and US probably speak English and Hindi (90%+). Flights from MAA are a whole different ball game. Tamil is needed. I know I always respond to these regional pride posts. It actually surprises me how many people on the Indian aviation boards are obsessed with their own ethnic group. I guess my main exposure to India is mostly BOM where this type of stuff is rarely heard (Shiv Sena stuff is really in neighborhoods we never visit). My family cares about service, fare, food, FF miles, reliability not what language the announcements are made. Tasty Indian food is a plus (and we don't care if it's North or South Indian food - as long as its generally mainstream Indian food).
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PostPosted: Thu Jun 29, 2017 9:02 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Caliguy wrote:


The purpose of announcements in different languages is safety. It's not for an Indian feeling or ethnic pride. Also its about the languages spoken by the pax not generally spoken in the State. So flights from BOM don't have Marathi announcements because 90%+ of the pax flying speak either English or Hindi (AF doesn't even do Hindi thinking everyone speaks English). Flights to the Gulf should have more regional language announcements because of the type of pax that fly those routes (hence EK's announcements and I am sure AI, 9W to the Gulf). Flights from BLR to say AMS probably only need English and Hindi. BLR is very cosmopolitan, and the pax flying to the EU and US probably speak English and Hindi (90%+). Flights from MAA are a whole different ball game. Tamil is needed..


I've never heard EK, BA or anyone else making safety announcements in regional Indian languages. It is only the welcome announcement that they make in regional Indian languages. So safety is definitely not what they are trying to address by doing so. It is merely a smart move aimed at customer comfort.

Actually, Hindi is not needed anywhere in India outside of the cow belt and DEL. Most other Indians, at least the ones who travel abroad regularly, are comfortable with English. If not English, they would prefer their native tongue to Hindi.

It is not about regionalism or ethicity, as you have wrongfully made it out to be throughout this thread. The point was that foreign airlines tend to appease the Indian customer better by going the extra mile and doing announcements in regional languages. This is in contrast to AI, who would still make announcements in Hindi on a MAA-SIN or BOM-EWR flight, ones where most pax wouldn't give a rat's ass to Hindi.
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