October 5, 2021 1:28:26 am
The Air India Specific Alternate Mechanism (AISAM), a group of ministers led by Home Minister Amit Shah, met on Monday to discuss the national carrier’s disinvestment, sources said.
While it is unclear whether the AISAM approved the proposal to ratify the winning bid, a senior government official said that “an announcement will be made soon”. In addition to the Home Minister, the AISAM comprises Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman, Commerce Minister Piyush Goyal and Civil Aviation Minister Jyotiraditya Scindia.
The Indian Express reported Saturday that the Tata Group has emerged as the frontrunner to acquire Air India. The Mumbai-based conglomerate has placed the highest bid — over Rs 5,000 crore more than SpiceJet promoter Ajay Singh, who participated in his individual capacity in the bidding process, according to people in the know.
Once the winner is announced, the share-purchase agreement will be signed with the winning entity within 15 days, and the transfer process will begin immediately afterward.
Representatives of both bidders were called for meetings on two occasions earlier this week, during which the share-purchase agreement was discussed to help them take a long-term view of Air India’s various liabilities, and plan the funding accordingly.
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