Civil servants, air force officers, technocrats, airline pilots and many more individuals have piloted Air India over the decades.
When Ilker Ayci, the former Chairman of Turkish Airlines, takes control of the currently loss-making Air India, he will be the first foreign national to be at the helm of the once-storied carrier.
As many as 61 individuals have headed Air India, including erstwhile Indian Airlines, between June 6, 1953, and January 27, 2022 — the period during which the carrier was under the government’s control, according to an official document accessed by PTI.
The list includes civil servants, Air Force officers, technocrats and airline pilots.
Eight out of the 61 person served as Chairman and Managing Director of the combined entity, Air India Ltd between August 2007 and January 27, 2022.
Air India’s last government-appointed CMD was IAS officer Vikram Dev Dutt, who took charge on January 21, 2022 and Tatas took control of the carrier on January 27.
BC Mukherjee, an Indian civil services officer, was the first Chairman of Air India after it was nationalised in 1953 and served in that position from June 12, 1953 to March 9, 1954. His successor Shankar Prasad, also a civil services ICS officer, was at the helm as Chairman for nearly five years.
Also, 34 persons served as Chairman/ CMD of Air India between June 1953 and August 2008. Of them, 15 persons served as Chairman and 16 persons as Chairman and Managing Director during the period.
Between November 1957 and February 1997, 13 persons served as General Manager/ Managing Director of the erstwhile Indian Airlines, as per the document.
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