First custom-made VVIP aircraft Boeing 777 'Air India One' for President, PM arrives in India - The plane was scheduled to be delivered by aircraft manufacturer Boeing to Air India during August but the delivery was delayed due to technical reasons, news agency PTI reported quoting the officials. The VVIP aircraft B-777 - whose call sign is Air India One - is a replacement of wide-body aircraft Boeing B-747 jumbo aircraft. Air India, the National Carrier of India, offers connections to over 70 international and 100 domestic destinations for your travel plan. Book now and avail extra baggage allowance, business class upgrades and flexible change and rebooking options. New Delhi, October 15: Air India One, the first of the custom-made Boeing B777 aircraft will be used to fly the President of India, Vice President and the Prime Minister on international state visits.The first plane arrived in Delhi from the US on October 1, 2020 at the Indira Gandhi International Airport (IGI) Airport.
Bengaluru: A custom-made B777 aircraft, which will be used to fly the President, vice president and the Prime Minister, is going to arrive from the US in India. The plane was scheduled to be delivered by aircraft manufacturer Boeing to Air India during August, but the delivery was delayed due to technical reasons.
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Senior officials of the national carrier had reached the US during the first half of August to receive the plane from Boeing, the officials said.
Air India One, which is the call sign of the aircraft, will land at the Delhi airport from Texas at around 3 pm on Thursday (October 1), they stated.
Another custom-made B777 plane for the travel of VVIPs is likely to be received from Boeing during a later date, they noted.
It was expected that the delivery of these two planes, which are earmarked for VVIP travel only, would be done by July. However, due to COVID-19, their delivery has been delayed by a few months.
During the travel of the VVIPs, the two B777 aircraft will be operated by pilots of the Indian Air Force (IAF) and not of Air India, an official said.
Currently, the President, vice president and the Prime Minister fly on Air India's B747 planes, which have the call sign Air India One.
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Air India pilots fly these B747 aircraft for the dignitaries and the Air India Engineering Services Limited (AIESL) maintains them.
B777 Air India One Time
When these B747 aircraft are not flying the dignitaries, they are used by the Indian national carrier for commercial operations.
The new planes will be used for travel of the dignitaries only.
Air India One 777
These two aircraft were part of Air India's commercial fleet for a few months in 2018 before they were sent back to Boeing for retrofitting them for VVIP travel.
B777 Air India One Cost
The B777 planes will have state-of-the-art missile defence systems called Large Aircraft Infrared Countermeasures (LAIRCM) and Self-Protection Suites (SPS).
In February, the US agreed to sell the two defence systems to India at a cost of USD 190 million.
Air India 777 300
The Centre has already initiated the process of divestment of its stake in Air India, which has a debt of over Rs 60,000 crore. However, the process has been postponed due to the COVID-19 pandemic.