Welcome Back Air India, Says Ratan Tata; Historic Moment, Says N Chandrasekharan
Almost a hundred years ago, a young JRD Tata launched India's first air service. It was 1932. Tata piloted an over 7 hour flight from Karachi to Ahmedabad and then to Mumbai with a halt between.
The fuel was transported to the plane on a bullock cart, said a note from Tata Sons documenting the history of the airline.
“On an exciting October dawn in 1932, a Puss Moth and I soared joyfully from Karachi with our first precious load of mail, on an inaugural flight to Bombay,” the note quotes JRD Tata as saying.
A war and a decade later, what started as an air mail service had become Air India.
As is well known since, Air India was thereafter nationalised. And now, some 70 years later, returns to the Tata fold with Tata Sons emerging winning bidder for Air India.
Harking back to that history, with a photograph of JRD Tata disembarking from an Air India plane, Tata Group's former chairman, Ratan Tata welcomed the win. "Mr. JRD Tata would have been overjoyed if he was in our midst today," said Tata in a post on Twitter.
Tata Sons Chairman N Chandrasekharan described the win as a historic moment, in an emailed statement.
“At the Tata group, we are delighted to be declared as the winner of the bid for Air India. This is a historic moment, and it will be a rare privilege for our Group to own and operate the country’s flag bearer airline. It will be our endeavour to build a world-class airline which makes every Indian proud. On this occasion, I would like to pay tribute to J.R.D. Tata, pioneer of Indian aviation, whose memory we cherish.”