Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Saturday reviewed the progress made by various ministries in the past six months after the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) returned to power for a second consecutive term.
Secretaries to the civil aviation, agriculture, and transport ministries made presentations at the meeting. The prime minister took stock of Air India’s financial condition and the ongoing disinvestment process. “Air India was advised to rationalise cost structure to bring expenses down. There were enquires on the ongoing disinvestment process,” a senior official who attended the meeting said.
He had said if the Centre didn't infuse at least Rs 2,000 crore, the airline would be forced to shut down.
The official said a detailed analysis of the airline's privatisation plan would happen later with officials from the Department of Investment and Public Asset Management.
The prime minister also took stock of the increase in the number of operational airports. As part of the infrastructure push planned by the NITI Aayog, the government has planned to open 100 new airports in the next four years.
"Budgetary resources required for the regional connectivity plan were analysed and PMO officials were told that budgetary allocation for UDAN needed to be increased as every month at least three new airports were being opened up," the official said.
A second round of meeting is likely to take place soon as all the ministries could not make a presentation on Saturday.
Usually the Council of Ministers meets after the Cabinet meeting every month. But this time, the meeting is being held independently. The regular weekly Cabinet meeting will be held on December 24, sources said.