The government has no plans to divest its stake in Air India, said RN Choubey, Secretary Civil Aviation, on Friday.
“At present there is no move for divestment of government stake in Air India,” he told newspersons on the sidelines of a function to mark the 29th anniversary of the Bureau of Civil Aviation Security.
While sections in the government are said to be in favour of divesting stake in Air India to raise funds, there are others who feel that this is not the right time for divestment. They feel that since the airline has been reporting losses for several years, the government will not be able to get a good price for its asset.
Asked to comment on the decision of domestic airlines to stop flights to four airports including Mysuru, the Secretary pointed out that there were different traffic demands during different times of the year. Bhavnagar, Porbandar and Nanded are the other airports to which domestic airlines have stopped operating flights in the summer schedule which came into effect from March 27.
“In (the) winter schedule there is much higher demand while in the summer schedule demand is much lower. This is a normal phenomenon. It is not as if the four airports have been taken off the air map. Many more airports will be added during the winter schedule. The regional connectivity scheme, which the government is working on as part of the civil aviation policy, is meant to answer exactly such an issue,” Choubey said.
The Secretary expressed confidence that the civil aviation policy will be taken to the Union Cabinet for its approval this month. The policy has been in the works since October last year.