State-run Air India Ltd will resume flying its Boeing Co 787 Dreamliner passenger jets from Wednesday, Civil Aviation Minister Ajit Singh said on Tuesday, almost four months after the planes were grounded due to safety concerns.
Air India has six Dreamliners and has ordered 21 more. The planes have been grounded worldwide since January following incidents of overheating in the batteries providing auxiliary power. Boeing has since worked to develop new battery housings to prevent a repeat of the incidents.
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Air India will start a Dreamliner domestic flight on Wednesday and will start international flights on May 22, Singh told reporters, adding that all six of its Dreamliners would be ready for flying by the end of the month. Air India would also acquire eight more Dreamliners by December, he added.
He also said Air India was expected to post a net loss of about 40 billion rupees ($730 million) for the current fiscal year ending March 2014, compared with about 52 billion rupees in the previous fiscal year.
($1 = 54.8000 Indian rupees)
(Reporting by Devidutta Tripathy; Writing by Matthias Williams; Editing by Anand Basu)