Senior bureaucrat Rajiv Bansal took charge as the chairman and managing director of Air India for a second time on Monday.

Bansal, a 1988-batch IAS officer of the Nagaland cadre, is currently the additional secretary in the Ministry of Petroleum and Natural Gas.

The announcement of his appointment was made on February 13.

The Appointments Committee of the Cabinet has approved his appointment as the CMD of Air India in the rank and pay of additional secretary, the order released on February 13 stated.

Bansal replaced Ashwani Lohani, who has completed his one-year tenure as the head of the airline. As part of the ambitious strategic disinvestment, the government had on January 27 issued the preliminary bid document for 100 per cent stake in Air India, which has a debt pile of over ₹60,000 crore.

Bansal was in August 2017 named as Air India’s interim CMD for three months.

During Bansal’s three-month tenure, Air India had launched services to Copenhagen among others. He had also initiated various steps to reduce costs and improve on-time performance of flights during his short tenure.

Lohani, a 1980-batch officer of the Indian Railway Service of Mechanical Engineers. He was appointed as Air India’s CMD for the second time in February last year.

Prior to his stint at Air India, he had retired as the Railway Board chairman in December 2018.

He had retired as the Railway Board chairman in December 2018. Bansal, who hails from Haryana, has served in the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology, where he had looked after digital payments, Aadhaar and internet governance among others.

During his career spanning over 30 years, he has worked as secretary, Central Electricity Regulatory Commission (CERC), joint secretary, Department of Heavy Industries, and also as director, Ministry of Civil Aviation, besides holding important assignments in the state government of Nagaland.

He is a civil engineer by profession having graduated from IIT Delhi in 1986. He also holds a diploma in finance from ICFAI, Hyderabad, and an executive masters in international business from IIFT, New Delhi.

(With input from agencies)