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Swamy's view on Air India not govt view: Aviation Minister

Monday - January 27, 2020 5:27 pm , Category : BUSINESS
New Delhi, Jan 27 (IANS) Days after senior BJP leader Subramanian Swamy warned the government against selling national carrier Air India, Civil Aviation Minister Hardeep Singh Puri on Monday said that his view did not reflect that of the government.
Asked on the recent comments made by Swamy and former party stalwart Yashwant Sinha pertaining to Air India disinvestment, the Minister said that BJP was a democratic party and people were entitled to have their views.
"..the views of the two gentlemen, I am afraid, in this case do not reflect the views of the government,"Puri said while responding to media query over proposed disinvestment of Air India.
Speaking to IANS, Swamy had said that the issue of selling Air India was currently being discussed by a Parliamentary panel and any move to divest the government holding in the carrier would force him to go to court.
"Right now, it (Air India disinvestment) is before the consultative committee and I am a member of that. I have been asked to give a note which will be discussed in the next meeting. They (the government) can't go ahead without that," Swamy had said.
"If they do, I will go to court. They know that too," he cautioned.
The government on Monday invited expression of interest (EoI) from prospective buyers of Air India and two of its subsidiaries. Along with Air India and its low-cost subsidiary Air India Express, the flag carrier's 50 per cent stake in ground-handling arm AISATS has also been put on the block.
The last date for submitting the EoI is March 17, 2020. The qualified bidders would be intimated by March 31.
Some of the opposition parties such as the CPI and the Trinamool Congress have also questioned the proposed disinvestment of Air India and have urged the government to refrain from privatisation overdrive.

--IANS nk/sn/vd