• Air India may lose privilege of being sole carrier of government staff if Cabinet note goes through

    Loss-making Air India may soon lose the privilege of being the sole carrier of government employees. The civil aviation ministry is preparing a Cabinet note that will allow them to opt for the cheapest fare, regardless of carrier. Currently, government employees can only use other carriers if there is no Air India option.

    “The finance ministry, in one of the review meetings, has asked us to abolish this rule mandating Air India for official flights,” said a senior aviation ministry official, seeking anonymity. “We are preparing a Cabinet note, which should reach the Cabinet for approval in 15 days.” Air India, in the midst of a government bailout programme, may not have too much sympathy among some members of the government.

    Cabinet Minister M Venkaiah Naidu recently vented his ire on Twitter about missing a meeting 10 days ago because his Air India flight was delayed. The current rules mandate all central government employees should fly Air India on official trips. In case a destination is not connected by Air India, the official has to apply for an exemption from the civil aviation ministry. Ken Crawley Womens Jersey

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