India’s Jet Airways regains Air Operator’s Certificate

A Jet Airways Boeing 737 approaches to land.
Md Shaifuzzaman Ayon, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Jalan-Kalrock Capital, the ownership group of dormant Indian carrier Jet Airways has announced that it has obtained renewal of the airline’s Air Operators Certificate (AOC) from the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) on 28 July 2023.

The revival of Jet Airways


In their statement dated July 31, in the Jalan-Kalrock Consortium said that it remains “fully dedicated to the revival of Jet Airways and is committed to implementing a comprehensive strategy to ensure the airline’s success.”

The group advised that they will be working closely with all relevant authorities, industry partners and stakeholders in reviving the airline operation in the weeks ahead.

“JKC expresses its heartfelt gratitude to the aviation regulator, the Ministry of Civil Aviation, and all other stakeholders in showcasing their faith in JKC and in the revival of Jet Airways,” the statement read.

Cessation of operations in 2019


Incorporated in April 1992 as a limited liability company, the airline began operations as an air taxi operator in 1993. It began full-fledged operations in 1995 with international flights added in 2004.

Jet Airways was the second-largest airline in India by market share, after IndiGo. It operated a fleet of over 120 aircraft, including Boeing 737s, Airbus A330s, and Boeing 777s.

The airline flew to over 65 destinations in India and across the world, including Europe, the Middle East, Southeast Asia, and North America.

The airline has been grounded for an extended period, having ceased operations in April 2019. The airline is now being revived under the insolvency and bankruptcy code as per India’s National Company Law Tribunal (NCLT) approved resolution plan of Jalan Kalrock Consortium.

The revitalised Jet Airways plans to operate as a full-service carrier with a two class cabin configuration, including a business class cabin design to global standards and a new generation economy class.

Jet Airways history


Jet Airways suspended operations in April 2019 after failing to secure emergency funding. The airline was then taken over by a consortium of investors led by Kalrock Capital.

In April 2022, Jet Airways announced that it would resume commercial operations in June 2022. This did not eventuate, and the news of the reactivation of the carrier’s AOC today represents the latest significant move by the dormant airline.

Jet Airways was originally founded by Naresh Goyal and his wife Anita Goyal. The airline was initially called Jet Airways (India) Ltd., but the name was shortened to Jet Airways in 2007.

Jet Airways was known for its high-quality service and its fleet of modern aircraft. The airline was also a pioneer in introducing new services to the Indian market, such as in-flight entertainment and business class lounges.

Jet Airways’ closure was a major setback for the Indian aviation industry. The airline’s demise left a vacuum in the market, which was quickly filled by other airlines. However, the carrier’s return to the skies would be a welcome development for the Indian aviation industry.

Previous difficulties


Some of the factors that contributed to the airline’s previous financial difficulties were:

High fuel costs: The airline was one of the most fuel-intensive airlines in the world. This was due to the fact that the airline operated a large fleet of older, less fuel-efficient aircraft.

High debt levels: A high debt burden made it difficult for the airline to raise new capital.

Competition from low-cost carriers: Jet Airways faced increasing competition from upcoming low-cost carriers such as IndiGo and SpiceJet. These carriers were able to offer lower fares by cutting back on services and amenities.

Poor management: Jet Airways was also plagued by poor management. The airline’s management was unable to effectively address the challenges that the airline was facing.

According to the Consortium statement, the airline is now “well capitalised and led by seasoned industry professionals” and intends to position itself as India’s “most people focused and customer friendly airline.”

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