The issue of compensation package to be paid by Boeing to Air India for the delay in delivery of Dreamliners is expected to go before the Cabinet in the next five to 10 days, Civil Aviation Minister Mr Ajit Singh said on Saturday.

“... It has to be approved by the Cabinet. In that process, we have to take comment from every ministry. Some ministries have not given comment some have raised some questions... I think within next five to 10 days, it should go to the Cabinet,” he told reporters after reviewing the Passing Out Parade of the newly inducted CISF personnel at the Regional Training Centre near here.

As soon as the matter was cleared by the Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs, three of the Boeing 787 Dreamliner planes were ready for delivery in the plants of the American manufacturer Boeing, he said in reply to questions.

Mr Singh also said that there were enough pilots already trained to fly the three new aircraft.

Before being launched on international routes, the Dreamliner would be flown within the country for a few months, so that pilots get practical training on crucial functions like take-offs and landings.

Air India had two years ago sought a $710 million compensation package for the delay. Following this, several rounds of negotiations between the airline and Boeing took place. In the last week of May, AI Board agreed on the package from Boeing and sent it for approval by the government.

The national carrier had placed orders for 27 B-787s in 2005 and, as per the original schedule, Boeing was to have commenced delivery from September 2008 but failed to do so due to several factors, ranging from delays in supply of spares from other parts of the world to strike in the Boeing plant.

To a question on the abrupt removal of former DGCA Mr E K Bharat Bhushan, the minister said it was “a totally administrative action” and had nothing to do with Kingfisher Airlines.

(This article was published on July 21, 2012)
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