India’s new ultra-low-cost carrier Akasa Air aims to start commercial operations from mid-2022. The news comes as the airline receives a no-objection certificate (NOC) from the country’s government. 

“We are extremely happy and grateful to the Ministry of Civil Aviation for their support and for the grant of the NOC,” Akasa Air CEO Vinay Dube announced in a statement dated October 11, 2021. 

SNV Aviation, which will operate under the name Akasa Air, added that it will “continue to work with the regulatory authorities on all additional compliances” required for the successful launch of the airline. 

Akasa Air is backed by Indian billionaire Rakesh Jhunjhunwala who is considering investing $35 million with 40% equity in the startup airline and plans to have 70 aircraft over the next four years. 

Akasa Air is reportedly in talks with Boeing and Airbus to set up its fleet. According to a moneycontrol report dated August 2021, the airline is considering acquiring 100 Boeing 737 MAX aircraft. 

In August 2021, India's aviation authority, the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA), ungrounded the Boeing 737 MAX aircraft for commercial use. Indian authorities had grounded the Boeing 737 MAX on March 13, 2019, over safety concerns following two fatal crashes in Indonesia and Ethiopia.

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Akasa Airline is reportedly in negotiations with Boeing to order up to 100 Boeing 737 MAX aircraft.