Merged AI-Indian entity may take off as 'Air Indian'

New Delhi: The entity that will come into existence after the country's state-owned domestic and international carriers, Indian and Air-India, merge may well be dubbed, "Air Indian".

The government has also registered a new company, called the National Aviation Company Ltd, which will undertaker the task of amalgamating the two airlines along with their low-fare subsidiaries, Air India Express (Air India) and Alliance Air (Indian).

According to reports, Air India's mascot, the "Maharaja" may also be adopted as the logo for the new airline. If so, it will win out over Indian's "Ashok Chakra". Sources indicate that an official announcement in this regard may be made as early as next week.

Air India sources merely confirmed that a decision on the broad contours of the proposed merger is expected soon.

Some practical, and interesting, nitty-gritty's may influence the choice of the new brand name for the merged entity. "Air Indian" will continue to maintain the current top position of Air India on the ABC directory, which lists airlines alphabetically and is widely used as a reference book by the International Air Transport Association, other international airlines and tour operators worldwide.

Also, the initials of the new airline would remain A-I, which would continue to maintain the high international brand equity of Air India.