A custom-made B777 plane, which will probably be used to fly the President, Vice President and Prime Minister, has arrived in Delhi from the US in the present day, mentioned authorities officers.
The airplane was scheduled to be delivered by plane producer Boeing to Air India in July however its supply was delayed twice – as soon as in July for just a few weeks resulting from COVID-19 pandemic after which in August for just a few weeks resulting from technical causes – the officers famous.
Air India One, which is the decision signal of the plane, landed on the Delhi airport from Texas at round three pm in the present day, they said.
Senior officers of the nationwide service had reached the US throughout the first half of August to obtain the airplane from Boeing, the officers mentioned.
One other custom-made B777 airplane for the journey of VVIPs is more likely to be acquired from Boeing throughout a later date, they famous.
These two plane have been a part of Air India’s industrial fleet for just a few months in 2018 earlier than they have been despatched again to Boeing for retrofitting them for VVIP journey.
Officers mentioned the entire price of buy and retrofitting the 2 planes has been estimated to be round Rs 8,400 crore.
The B777 planes may have state-of-the-art missile defence techniques known as Giant Plane Infrared Countermeasures (LAIRCM) and Self-Safety Suites (SPS).
In February, the US agreed to promote the 2 defence techniques to India at a value of USD 190 million.
In the course of the journey of the VVIPs, the 2 B777 plane will probably be operated by pilots of the Indian Air Pressure (IAF) and never of Air India, an official mentioned.
Presently, the President, Vice President and Prime Minister, fly on Air India’s B747 planes, which have the decision signal Air India One.
Air India pilots fly these B747 plane for the dignitaries and the Air India Engineering Companies Restricted (AIESL) maintains them.
When these B747 plane are usually not flying the dignitaries, they’re utilized by the Indian nationwide service for industrial operations.
The custom-made B777 planes will probably be used for journey of the dignitaries solely.
The Centre has already initiated the method of divestment of its stake in Air India, which has a debt of over Rs 60,000 crore. Nonetheless, the method has been postponed because of the COVID-19 pandemic.
(Aside from the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV workers and is revealed from a syndicated feed.)