In the run-up to International Women’s Day, Air India along with Air India Express and AirAsia India has scheduled a staggering total of over 90 all-women crew flights as a tribute to the spirit of the power of women. The number is also significant in relation to the 90th Anniversary of Bharat Ratna JRD Tata’s first commercial flight.
The Air India group has been operating these all-women crew flights on international and domestic routes since 1st March 2023. In tune with this year’s theme ‘DigitALL: Innovation and technology for gender equality’, it exemplifies the myriad ways in which women have contributed to the aviation sector and enriched it and emphasises the diversity and inclusion of the airlines’ women workforce.
The sheer volume of the number of flights, the cabin and cockpit crew covering 12 international destinations besides most of the domestic destinations this year reiterates the organisation’s rich legacy of having women employees excelling in every area of its functioning.
Women constitute over 40% of Air India’s workforce, with 275 of its 1825 pilots being women, representing 15% of the cockpit crew strength and making it an airline having one of the largest number of female pilots.
Speaking on the occasion, Campbell Wilson, CEO and Managing Director of Air India, said: “India has the largest number of commercial women pilots in the world and with more Indian women pursuing careers in aviation, we are achieving gender equality in the workforce. We are proud of the women workforce with us at Air India today, and we thank each of them for sending out a powerful message that women can excel in any field.”
Besides, the cockpit and cabin crew most of these flights will be served by women dispatchers, safety and quality auditors, loaders, engineers, security as well.
Air India has traditionally been operating all-women crew flights for four decades now to various international and domestic operations. It has also operated the world's first all-women crew flight across the globe from Delhi to SFO, besides flying a similar flight charting the polar route.
In Air India Express and AirAsia India, the low-cost subsidiaries of Air India, over a third of the workforce comprises women. More importantly, several women play a key role in various departments—including in the domains of finance, commercial, human resources, customer happiness, flight training, technology, flight dispatch, engineering, safety, and operations control. The two airlines have a total of 97 women pilots.
Aloke Singh, CEO, Air India Express and President, AirAsia India said: “We strive for an equitable representation of women in our workforce and especially in our leadership. We are particularly proud to have women in key positions in roles that have traditionally been considered male bastions in aviation. We truly believe that diversity is a strength for us, driving collaboration and efficiency. This Women’s Day, we are grateful to all those who challenge gender stereotypes. We will continue to encourage gender diversity and will provide a platform for professional growth for our women colleagues. We urge more women to come forward and join us on our exciting journey as we transform Aviation in the country.”
Of the 90+ flights operated by all-women cockpit and cabin crew, Air India is flying 40 flights across domestic and international locations, whereas AI Express is operating 10 all-international flights to the Gulf route and AirAsia India is operating over 40 flights within India. Air India group would be operating across multiple international destinations, including Abu Dhabi, Birmingham, Dubai, Damman, Jeddah, Male, Muscat, Melbourne, Toronto, Paris, New York and London – indeed a crest in the annals of India’s civil aviation!
To commemorate International Women’s Day, Air India has also organised programmes aiming to celebrate, empower and inspire all. There would be sessions on financial decision-making, being an “Ally at Work”, and many inspiring engagements with women achievers and employees across the network at the workplace. Breast cancer screenings, using AI-led technology, are also being offered. Air India Express has organised events at the Kochi International Airport. There would be an evening dedicated to the magnificence of art, where artist GS Smitha would be felicitated — a woman painter’s work imprinted as the airline’s tail art has literally been taken to the skies. Air India Express will also participate in an “All Women Bike Rally” organised by Thiruvananthapuram International Airport. AirAsia India will be giving all women travellers the opportunity to reserve complimentary Red Carpet Priority Services (Priority Check-in, Baggage and Boarding), for any bookings or check-in done on the AirAsia India website or mobile app between 8th and 15th March.
About Air India:
Founded by the legendary JRD Tata, Air India pioneered India’s aviation sector. Since its first flight on October 15, 1932, Air India has an extensive domestic network and has spread its wings beyond to become a major international airline with a network across USA, Canada, UK, Europe, Far-East, South-East Asia, Australia and the Gulf. Air India is a member of Star Alliance, the largest global airline consortium. After 69 years as a Government-owned enterprise, Air India and Air India Express were welcomed back into the Tata group in January 2022. The present management at Air India is driving the five year transformation roadmap under the aegis of Vihaan.AI to establish itself as a world-class global airline with an Indian heart.
About the Tata Group:
Founded by Jamsetji Tata in 1868, the Tata Group is a global enterprise, headquartered in India, comprising 30 companies across ten verticals. The Group operates in more than 100 countries across six continents, with a mission 'To improve the quality of life of the communities we serve globally, through long-term stakeholder value creation based on Leadership with Trust’.
Tata Sons is the principal investment holding company and promoter of Tata companies. Sixty-six percent of the equity share capital of Tata Sons is held by philanthropic trusts, which support education, health, livelihood generation and art and culture. In 2021-22, the revenue of Tata companies, taken together, was $128 billion (INR 9.6 trillion). These companies collectively employ over 935,000 people.
Each Tata company or enterprise operates independently under the guidance and supervision of its own Board of Directors. There are 29 publicly-listed Tata enterprises with a combined market capitalisation of $311 billion (INR 23.6 trillion) as on March 31, 2022.
Companies include Tata Consultancy Services, Tata Motors, Tata Steel, Tata Chemicals, Tata Consumer Products, Titan, Tata Capital, Tata Power, Indian Hotels, Tata Communications, Tata Digital, and Tata Electronics.
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