New Delhi: Air India plans to start twice a week service to Najaf in Iraq from the second week of January with a stopover in Delhi. Najaf is considered sacred by Shia Muslims and Lucknow has a good Shia population. Millions of Shia Muslims across the world visit Iraq each year during Muharram and Arbaeen.
All India Shia Personal Law Board has been trying for long for this service from Lucknow to Najaf.
Air India plans to operate A320 neo aircraft for the services.
The details have been mentioned in the tender document seeking bids for appointment of General Sales Agent (GSA) in Iraq.
The frequency of the service would be twice a week and the plane would have 162 seats, with 12 in business class and the rest in the economy class, according to the document.
“Air India is desirous of appointing GSA in the territory of Iraq for handling air passenger transportation services.
“The initial term of the GSA agreement would be five years from the date of execution of the same, which would be subject to review by Air India every year based on the performance of the successful bidder,” the document said
Air India group, which comprises Air India, Air India Express and Alliance Air, operates over 40 flights per day to more than 80 domestic and 44 international destinations with a combined fleet of 161 aircraft.