With an extensive network of passenger and cargo services all throughout the world, Air India has carved a niche for itself in the aviation industry the world over. Chhatrapati Shivaji International Airport, Mumbai, Indira Gandhi International Airport, New Delhi and Chennai International Airport are the main bases of Indian Airlines. With a wide coverage of 95 destinations throughout the world and 12 points in India, Air India also has a fully-owned subsidiary by the name of Air India Express.
Though, air transport in India started on February 18, 1911, when the main purpose for air travel used to be for carrying mails from one place to the other, for example Allahabad to Naini Junction, public transport via air began only on October 15, 1932. Taking wings from Drigh Road Airport, Karachi to Mumbai, while stopping over at Allahabad on the way, J.R.D. Tata, regarded as the father of civil aviation in India, was actually the founder of Air India. Tata Airlines was renamed as Air India in the year 1946.
During 1947, Air India started functioning on a global scale. In the same year, Air India International Limited was formed through some dialogues with the Government of India that basically catered to the requirements of the international passengers. On the grounds of special appeal from the Air India family, the Government of India agreed to limit the sharing to a total of 49 percent. But, a provision was also signed to increase the sharing by another two percent in the future if situation for something like that ever arose.
Air India was officially launched on June 8, 1948. During the times, a weekly flight from Mumbai to London via Cairo and Geneva did the rounds. And the only flying machine that was used for the same was a Lockheed Constellation aircraft.
With the financial condition of the various independent airlines operating in the country during the early 1950s finding it difficult to function, due to lack of funds, the Government of India nationalized the air transport industry. As an outcome of this venture, on August 1, 1953, two autonomous corporations took shape. They were called Indian and Air India International. While Indian comprising of eight domestic players catered to the domestic market, Air India International was dedicated to the international flyers. In the year 1994, Air India international was renamed as Air India Limited. Today,Air India commands respect amongst the various airlines in the whole world and has carved a niche for itself in the aviation industry the world over.