Mumbai: The Airports Authority of India (AAI) has written to cash-strapped Air India asking it to pay in full Rs650 crore of outstanding airport charges.
This comes as Air India, which has been facing a financial crisis in the past few years, is hoping for a government bailout in the form of either soft loan or equity infusion.
Civil aviation minister Praful Patel is due to meet Prime Minister Manmohan Singh soon on the airline’s restructuring plan. People familiar with the matter say Air India management is likely to ask for around Rs3,000 crore from the government.
Reacting to the development, an Air India spokesperson said: “We have been paying AAI on a regular basis. There are some pending dues which would be paid over a period of time.”
Air India had earlier sought more time to pay the dues in tranches, but it failed to do so.
Unlike private airlines that have to give bank guarantees or fixed deposits, which can be encashed if the airline defaults on payment, Air India has to give nothing.