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4-member team to examine AI route profitability

New Delhi: Civil Aviation Minister Ajit Singh today formed a four-member committee to examine the profitability of routes of cash-strapped Air India and suggest ways to rationalise them in order to make it profitable for the national carrier. The decision came after Singh in his review found that the national carrier was operating domestic and international flights on some of the non-profitable routes or on which the airline was either not even meeting its fuel cost, operational cost or the total cost.

The committee will have G Asok Kumar, Joint Secretary in Ministry of Civil Aviation (MoCA), as the chairman and Syed Nasir Ali, Director in MoCA, S C Sharma, Executive Director (Operations of Airports Authority of India) and Lalit Gupta, Deputy Director in Directorate General in Civil Aviation, as members. The committee will give its report keeping in view the profitability, except for mandatory areas as per route dispersal guidelines, a statement from the ministry said.

The committee would analyse the criteria for withdrawal or inclusion of routes in the Summer and Winter schedule during last year and identify routes which are not able to meet out various costs and find out reasons for not meeting out those costs. The committee would then recommend route wise withdrawal or continuance of flights during current summer schedule and making them profitable. They would also identify parameters for new route allocation and their weightage for arriving at a decision, the statement said, adding the Air India management would be providing all data and logistic support to the Committee.

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