Stock - Air India
Alliance Air operates flights within India using a fleet of 18 ATR 72-600 aircraft. Image Credit: Shutterstock

Dubai: Air India has confirmed that Alliance Air is no longer a subsidiary of the airline. The announcement comes after Tata Sons formally took over Air India last year. Alliance Air operates regional flights to smaller towns and cities in India with a fleet of 18 ATR 72-600 aircraft.

In a Twitter post, Air India said that passengers who have tickets of Air India with a 4-digit flight number starting with ‘9’ or a 3-digit flight number starting with ‘9I’, must note that these bookings actually belong to Alliance Air, which is no longer a subsidiary of the carrier.

“Booking/queries related to Alliance Air will not be handled by Air India from April 15,” Air India said in the advisory.

Tata Sons, India’s oldest and largest conglomerate, took over the debt-laden national carrier in October 2021. Its winning bid of Rs180 billion ($2.4 billion or Dh8.8 billion) beat that of India’s SpiceJet chief Ajay Singh, who offered Rs151 billion (Dh7.38 billion) in his private capacity to acquire the airline.

With the acquisition of Air India and Air India Express, Tata owns four carriers. The other two are Vistara, a joint venture with Singapore Airlines, and AirAsia India. Some media reports suggest that Tata may consider merging all or some of the airlines to bolster its presence in certain markets and optimize its routes.

Tata Sons are expected to announce a new CEO after Turkish aviation veteran Ilker Ayci resigned before taking charge. Ayci’s appointment revealed that Tata may be looking for a CEO who has had experience taking an airline to international markets. Ayci, who quit due to the controversies surrounding his appointment, had bureaucratic ties and had dealt with labour unions in the past at Turkish Airlines.

Last month, the chairman of Tata Sons, N Chandrasekaran, was officially appointed to the same title at Air India.