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Vistara launches first flight from Delhi; says will ‘do it right’

Entering the Indian aviation space at a time when existing players are going through a turbulent phase, Tata-SIA venture Vistara on Friday said its aim will be to ‘do it right’ rather than being lavish or over-the-top.

“We must do it right instead of making a big splash and getting into disappointment,” Vistara Chairman Prasad Menon told reporters as the airline’s debut flight took off from here for Mumbai.

“Being full service doesn’t mean you’re lavish or you’re over the top. It means serving different customers’ needs differently,” he said.

Conveying his best wishes on the occasion of the first Vistara flight, Tata group’s Chairman Emeritus Ratan Tata said it has been a long-cherished dream for the Tata group to establish a world-class full service airline in India and he would dedicate this day to late JRD Tata, the former chairman of the group and India’s first licensed pilot.

“… Today, that dream has come to life,” he added.

The launch of the new full-service airline marks the re-entry of Tata group in the airline business after over six decades. The group holds 30 per cent stake in the domestic arm of the Malaysian budget airline AirAsia India, but it is not part of day-to-day operations.

Overall, Vistara will be the third full-service carrier in the country, after state-run Air India and private carrier Jet Airways.

However, Indian aviation space has been going through turbulent weathers in the recent past. While Kingfisher had to be grounded after making a big splash with its positioning as a ‘luxury’ carrier, budget airline Spicejet is currently going through tough times.

The going has not been good for some other airlines as well.

Menon, a Tata Group veteran who has been made Chairman of the new aviation venture formed by Tatas in partnership with Singapore Airlines (SIA), also said that he is not worried by the competition.

“You can’t start a business by being worried about competition but by believing you have a space. Competition is good for customers,” he said ahead of Vistara’s debut flight, from Delhi to Mumbai.

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