GoM discusses AI divestment, sans results

In less than a month, the Modi government’s top ministers went into a huddle in North Block again on Wednesday to chart out a disinvestment plan for the ailing national carrier Air India, signalling the urgency to sell it.

The group of ministers (GoM), headed by finance minister Arun Jaitley, is learnt to have taken stock of the progress made so far on selling the airline to private firms.

It was decided by the group of ministers that financial and legal advisors would be appointed at the earliest to speed up the sale process.

After the Union cabinet last June gave ‘in-principle’ approval for disinvestment of Air India, as many as three companies have shown interest in buying out a portion of the flag carrier’s operations.
While IndiGo has submitted its unsolicited bid to acquire the airline’s international operations, allied aviation firms Bird group and Celebi are keen to buy the national carrier’s ground-handling assets. “Blue Dart has also made enquiries. They may be interested in cargo operations,” an official said. Official sources said that the GoM could not take a final decision.