BJP leader and Rajya Sabha MP Subramanian Swamy has hit out at the Centre over its decision to go for 100 per cent Air India disinvestment terming the move a wholly anti-national step. The BJP leader added that he will be forced to go to the court, mentioning it cannot be sold.
Swamy also posted information shared by an IT professional about Air India who asked why the Modi government wanted to sell the family silver (Air India) when it is on a recovery mode. Tejas Navangul (@NAVANGULTEJAS) who is also followed by Swamy on Twitter and is part of his team as per his (Navangul) Twitter bio, said, "Air India on Recovery mode: Maharaja’s April-December EBITDA Turns Positive; Loss Narrows," further asking Swamy, "Sir why does govt still want to sell this Family Silver instead of strengthening it?"
The government on Monday decided on 100 per cent Air India disinvestment. In a revised push, Centre has set March 17 as the deadline for submitting the Expression of Interest. The central has issued the preliminary information memorandum for 100 per cent stake sale in national carrier.
As part of the strategic disinvestment, Air India would also sell 100 per cent stake in low-cost airline Air India Express and 50 per cent shareholding in joint venture AISATS, as per the bid document issued on Monday.
Management control of the airline would also be transferred to the successful bidder. The government has set March 17 as the deadline for submitting the Expression of Interest (EoI). EY is the transaction adviser for Air India disinvestment process.
Air India disinvestment: Bidders to get access to draft share purchase
Potential bidders for Air India will have access to draft share purchase agreement and all records of the airline in the initial stage of the disinvestment process itself, according to a bid document. Besides, a due diligence report about the airline would be provided to potential bidders before the request for proposal (RFP) stage.
Generally, access to all data records and draft share purchase agreement (SPA) are provided to bidders put in their interest after the preliminary information memorandum (PIM) stage. The government on Monday came out with the PIM for 100 per cent disinvestment of debt-laden Air India as well as sale of Air India Express and 50 per cent shareholding in equal joint venture AISATS.
An official in the know said the legal and technical aspects of various contracts would be looked at during the due diligence process. The government would soon be appointing a technical and a legal advisor for carrying out the due diligence.
Entities seeking access to "data room" and SPA would have to deposit Rs 1 crore. The last date for submitting expression of interest (EoI) is March 17 while the last date for queries related to the disinvestment is February 1.
In 2018, the government had proposed to offload 76 per cent equity share capital of the national carrier as well as transfer the management control to private players. However, there were no bidders.