Someone said it best when he said that, Air India flies less and spends more. Air India is one of the oldest government run airlines in India. A huge amount of money is spent on it every year, just for the maintenance and proper functioning of the old planes. Even after this expenditure, the flight frequency of the planes of Air India leaves much to be desired.

Recently the last budget was presented in the parliament by Mr. P. Chidambaram. He announced that Air India, which is continuously operating at a loss, will get a huge sum of 5,500 crore rupees. So that it could operate properly for the next few months.

UPA government in its ten year tenure has invested up to 40,000 crore rupees on Air India, in order to pull it out from its debt swamp. Air India faces great challenges like, the pilot’s strike, difficulty of providing air hostess’s salaries, fuel prices, and competition with Jet Airways, Indigo, SpiceJet and many more. Air India struggles a lot from these issues and has to spend a huge amount of money just to keep it functioning. Today Air India has a huge debt of 45,000 crore rupees.

Last year Air India had 28,000 employees and expenditure on their combined annual salary was more than 3000 crore rupees. Many flights had a load factor of 75 to 78 percent. (Load factor is a measure of the amount of utilization of the total available capacity of a transport vehicle. It is useful for calculating the average occupancy on various routes of airlines.)

The sad part is that this airline service is in such a dire state because of the mismanagement of the government. Air India has now become a means of luxury and private property of politicians and ministers, which they and their family use as per their convenience. Air India is infamous for its flight delays.           

UPA government made many efforts to improve the condition of Air India, but none of it proved to be fruitful. Between the years 2004 – 2008, hundred new planes were bought. So that Air India could use it to improve their flight frequency on national and international routes and make some profit. But instead of improving flight frequency, this plan backfired. The flight network of the company completely broke down. Today no bank or any other financial institution is willing to invest or give loans to Air India.

Civil Aviation Minister Ajit Singh is of the opinion that the only resort to save Air India is privatization. But no serious proposal for the privatization of Air India is presented in front of the government. Anyway who is willing to buy Air India that is crushing under such a large debt.

Air India was started by Sir Jamshedji Tata. Now there are even talks about selling the priceless paintings, bought during his time, to get 400-500 crore rupees. This means the conditions have become so bad that they have to resort to such means to generate money.

Recently Air India got rid of four hundred consultants, hired by the officials of Ministry of Civil Aviation. Many such measures are being implemented to cut costs. But it is too little, too late.

In spite of having excellent pilots and good landing spots around the world, the current state of Air India is a big failure of the central government. Mismanagement, financial indiscipline and the whimsicality of politicians are the factors responsible for the current piteous state of Air India.

Is privatization the only remaining solution? Or can a new government, after this general election, think outside the box and grant a new life to our historical airline.

Photo source: Wikipedia

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What will you do if oneday the natural food disappears

Suppose if one day the natural food / vegetation ie rice, daal etc etc disappears and nothing left to eat except other living beings, what will u do to eat ?
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