Soon-to-be-privatised Air India on Monday got a new chairman and managing director with the government appointing senior IAS officer Pradeep Singh Kharola to the position. Kharola replaces Rajiv Bansal, who was made interim AI chief this August for three months when incumbent Ashwani Lohani was moved to Railway Board as chairman. A 1985 IAS officer of Karnataka cadre, Kharola is currently Bengaluru Metro Rail Corporation MD.
Bansal, additional secretary and financial advisor in the ministry of petroleum and natural gas, was given additional charge as AI chief for three months. Kharola is going to be full time chief and will oversee the transition of AI from a state-owned airline to a private entity if the government's plan to privatise the Maharaja takes off before the next elections.