Tag Archives: Pradeep Singh Kharola

Former Railway Board Chairman Ashwani Lohani reappointed Air India CMD

Former Railway Board Chairman Ashwani Lohani has been reappointed Chairman and Managing Director (CMD) of Air India. Lohani headed the carrier from August 2017 to September 2017 when he was moved to the Railway Board as the chairman, from where he retired in December 2018. It was during his tenure that Air India made its first operating profit of ₹105 crore in FY17 since the merger of Indian Airlines and Air India in 2007. Touted as the ‘Turnaround specialist’, Lohani’s appointment will be crucial after Air India’s failed divestment attempt last year. This year, the government has already decided to transfer over Rs 29,000 crore of AI’s huge Rs 55,000 debt to a Special Purpose Vehicle (SPV), along with the airline’s assets like real-estate and other subsidiaries of Air India. Lohani succeeds the 1985-batch Karnataka cadre IAS Pradeep Singh Kharola, who earlier this month was appointed as the Civil Aviation Secretary following the superannuation of RN Choubey. Source: PTI

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Travelport wins tender for sole distribution supplier to Air India

Travelport has announced that it had won a competitive tender process undertaken by Air India for the sole provision of distribution of its domestic flight content. The contract awarded to Travelport will begin to come into effect from November 2018 and be fully implemented by the end of 2019. The agreement confirms Air India’s continued deployment of Travelport Rich Content and Branding, now used by over 270 airlines. This displays airlines’ graphical content, their fares families and a full range of ancillary products. Travelport has seen a rapid expansion in India in recent years following the acquisition of business from the largest online travel agencies like MakeMyTrip, Ibibo, Yatra, EaseMyTrip and ClearTrip as well as working with the major corporate travel agencies and new entrants to the travel sector such as Paytm. Pradeep Singh Kharola, Chairman and Managing Director, Air India, said, “Air India is pleased to award this important contract to Travelport. In written submissions and in discussion with their team, the company demonstrated a clear understanding of our needs and displayed impressive technological and financial capability. As we make the switch to Travelport, we hope to be able to deliver even better value for money and a superior distribution to our customers in India and abroad.” Gordon Wilson, President and CEO, Travelport, commented, “Travelport is delighted to have been selected by Air India to provide these services. It is another welcome endorsement of our technology and our services in India. We look forward to implementing the agreement and delivering a world-class service to the airline.”

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Pradeep Singh Kharola appointed new Air India CMD

Senior IAS officer Pradeep Singh Kharola has been appointed as the new CMD of disinvestment-bound Air India,, an official release said. Kharola would take over as the chairman and managing director of the flagship carrier from Rajiv Bansal, who was given an extension only last week. A 1985-batch Karnataka cadre officer, Kharola would be steering the national airline at a time when the government has started the process for its strategic disinvestment. Kharola has been appointed as the CMD of Air India in the rank and pay of Secretary to Government of India. He has been the managing director of Bangalore Metro Rail Corporation Ltd since February 2015. Among others, Kharola has worked in various posts in Karnataka, including as the chairman of Karnataka Urban Infrastructure Development and Finance Corporation Ltd. He has also served as principal secretary to the Karnataka chief minister. Interestingly, Bansal — who is also additional secretary and financial adviser at the petroleum ministry — had got an extension as Air India CMD only last week after his initial three-month tenure ended on November 23. The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs (CCEA) gave its in-principle nod for the strategic disinvestment of Air India in June this year. The carrier, which has a debt burden of more than Rs 50,000 crore, managed to eke out operational profit for the first time in a decade in 2015-16. Under a turnaround plan approved by the previous UPA regime, Air India is to receive up to Rs 30,231 crore from the government subject to meeting certain performance thresholds. The ten-year bailout package began from 2012. So far, the embattled carrier has received around Rs 26,000 crore under the package. (Source: …

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