One jumbo jet won’t be included in the sale of Air India — the Boeing 747 will be transferred to its Alliance Air subsidiary and will used for VVIP duty, flying the President, Prime Minister and Vice-President on their international trips.
The government is in the process of selling its entire stake in Air India but will be holding on to Alliance Air, which otherwise operates 70-seater ATR aircraft on regional routes.
“The aircraft will stay with Alliance Air till December 2024 and two new Boeing 777s ordered for VVIP flights are set to be delivered, fitted with the latest security systems by this year and next year, respectively,” said a senior government official. The 777s have already been delivered and are currently being customised as per the specifications of the Special Protection Group (SPG), the person said. The first plane will be inducted into service by June.
The Boeing 747 could then be sold separately after December 2024 — a decision in this regard has yet to be taken, the official said.