Reliance insurance bid for Air India unfair: Niacl

Reliance insurance bid for Air India unfair: Niacl

New Delhi: Public insurer New India Assurance Co Ltd (Niacl) has accused the troubled Nacil of flouting the tender norms for about Rs45,000 crore insurance cover for Air India’s fleet to favour a consortium led by an Anil Ambani group firm, which refuted the allegation.

While Nacil declined to comment on accusations contained in a letter sent to it by New India Assurance, Reliance General Insurance said it had supplied all the information and documents desired by the aviation company for the tender.

In its letter to National Aviation Company of India Ltd (Nacil), New India Assurance Co said, “Tender norms laid down by Nacil have not been adhered to and have been relaxed to the disadvantage of two bidders."

Nacil is the holding company of Air India.

Three bidders - a consortium of four public sector insurers New India Assurance Co Ltd; ICICI Lombard and another consortium of private players led by Reliance General - were in the fray for the fleet insurance programme.

Air India which has a fleet of 153 aircraft is in deep financial crisis with losses of over Rs7,000 crore and the government is working on a revival package for it.

New India Assurance accused Nacil of delaying the opening of bids, which were submitted on 24 August, slated to be opened the same day, for 4 days without assigning any reason.

It also said certificates accompanying the bid for the consortium led by Reliance General were opened without a written assurance from its lead underwriter, which is required as per the norms.