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Letter to BS: Who will buy debt-laden Air India after IndiGo's exit?

Why should they buy a 'sick' airline unless they foresee turning it around anytime soon?

Business Standard 

Apropos your report “IndiGo pulls out of Air India race” (April 06), I think Indigo has always been a very circumspect, grounded and extremely well run airline. No wonder they are the only profit making air carrier in India. Rahul Bhatia and Aditya Ghosh are both prudent businessmen, who have done their homework well and come to this conclusion. Why should they buy a ‘sick’ airline unless they foresee turning it around anytime soon? They are not the kind of people who would go for it just for the sake of vanity. They had all along indicated what they were looking for — international operations of Air India and the — and now that this option is not available, they have wisely, and without fuss pulled out.

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Come to think of it, why should anyone buy the ‘monolithic, deep in losses airline’ and that too with the responsibility of taking on the ‘laid back’ staff for one year? This feature is enough to take down the future owners and probably sink them. Indeed, Air India was a great airline once and heralded India’s entry into international civil aviation. But that was a very long time ago and under a very different management. The government must take care of the staff but they should not thrust them on a prospective buyer. Unless the government makes this change in their term sheet, they can forget about this disinvestment.

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Krishan Kalra, Gurugram

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First Published: Sun, April 08 2018. 22:35 IST