India Today



1947 India has 74 DC-3 Dakotas, 12 Vikings, 3 DC-4s and various smaller craft, which largely flew VIPs

Tata’s Air India starts internatio­nal services with a weekly flight from Bombay to London via Cairo and Geneva

1953 Airways industry is

nationalis­ed. Indian Airlines is set up. Tata-owned internatio­nal routes are taken over to form Air India

1960 Air India begins operating its first

Boeing 707-437. It also marks the year in which the USA is first connected to India by an Indian airliner

1990 India decides to end Air India’s monopoly in the domestic sector. East West Airlines becomes the first national level private airline to operate in the country


Laws are amended to make Director General of Civil Aviation regulator; private players allowed. 10 per cent of air traffic come from the private sector


A group of army aviation profession­als sets up Deccan

Aviation. It becomes India’s largest privately owned helicopter charter company

2000 The first attempt made to privatise Air India fails


Air Deccan, India’s first-ever

national budget airline is started. In this decade, a series of policy changes are made to allow low-cost carriers to operate


Pakyong airport in Sikkim becomes the 100th operationa­l airport in the country


India opens a world-class integrated air terminal

(T3) at Indira Gandhi Internatio­nal Airport in Delhi

2007 Air India and Indian

Airlines merge and spiral into a debt trap. $96 million of combined debt becomes $900 million in the next two years

2020 Vistara begins flying to London taking narrow carriers from India on long haul flights


Air India along with Air India Express sold to Tata Sons for Rs 18,000 crore

2022 Post-pandemic, the air

traffic is coming back with 100 million people taking domestic flights and airlines operating at around 80 per cent capacity

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