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Air India 744 Parked In Delaware For The Week  
User currently offlineB747-437B From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Posted (9 years 10 months 1 week 5 days 20 hours ago) and read 5804 times:

In case any spotters care, an Air India 744 (VT-ESN) will be parked at the airport in Dover, DE this week while Prime Minister Manmohan Singh addresses the United Nations and meets with George W. Bush among others.

The aircraft flew LHR-JFK as AI 1 on Monday with a 7pm arrival and then ferried JFK-DOV as AI 345 at 10pm. She will ferry back to JFK on Sunday morning as AI 346 before departing to GVA as AI 1.

Geneva spotters should note that she will arrive after dark, but will overnight there and will continue to Delhi with a daylight departure next Monday morning.

29 replies: All unread, showing first 25:
 
User currently offlineMrniji From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 1, posted (9 years 10 months 1 week 5 days 17 hours ago) and read 5668 times:

... and another 744 out of service for a week - how long will it be out of service, regarding change of configuration, security and pi pa po..? why doesn't the Indian Air Force take this duty? Is there any law/regulation preventing this?

User currently offlineHAWK21m From India, joined Jan 2001, 31667 posts, RR: 56
Reply 2, posted (9 years 10 months 1 week 5 days 17 hours ago) and read 5646 times:

Why does India not get a permanent VIP Long range Aircraft.
regds
HAWK



Think of the brighter side!
User currently offlineJaysit From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 3, posted (9 years 10 months 1 week 5 days 16 hours ago) and read 5573 times:

"Why does India not get a permanent VIP Long range Aircraft."

Why does the Indian PM need a Boeing 744? Even the US President makes do with a Boeing 742.


User currently offlineBandA From United States of America, joined Aug 2004, 338 posts, RR: 0
Reply 4, posted (9 years 10 months 1 week 5 days 14 hours ago) and read 5450 times:

Isn't Manmohan Singh the one that refused to use the imported fleet of BMW's that the ex pm Vajpaee was using shortly before him leaving the office(as per the suggestion from security advisors) I am not sure how much those BMW's were worth... but they were probably way less than having a dedicated Jet. So I personally dont see Manmohan Singh wanting one...

I can understand the mans point about driving around in 5 crore BMW's while there are poor people starving to death... but I do think its about time an Indian PM arrives in style... rather than a Air India jet or a same old Ambi!



"They [Terrorists] never stop thinking about new ways to harm our country and our people, and neither do we." - GWB
User currently offlineBandA From United States of America, joined Aug 2004, 338 posts, RR: 0
Reply 5, posted (9 years 10 months 1 week 5 days 14 hours ago) and read 5447 times:

Jaysit,

The AF1 maybe based on a 742 but its probably a lot better equipped than a 744.

But I am sure thats nothing you didnt already know  Wink/being sarcastic

[Edited 2004-09-21 17:02:28]


"They [Terrorists] never stop thinking about new ways to harm our country and our people, and neither do we." - GWB
User currently offlineMrniji From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 6, posted (9 years 10 months 1 week 5 days 14 hours ago) and read 5425 times:

What interests me: why doesn't AI convert one of the 742s, which are to be retired soon, to a VVIP jet 'a la American style'?? [Or maybe one of this brilliant, shining 310 Big grin ]

User currently offlineJaysit From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 7, posted (9 years 10 months 1 week 5 days 14 hours ago) and read 5410 times:

"The AF1 maybe based on a 742 but its probably a lot better equipped than a 744."

You mean AF1 has inflight phones that actually work, unlike AI's 744s?

 Acting devilish


User currently offlineBandA From United States of America, joined Aug 2004, 338 posts, RR: 0
Reply 8, posted (9 years 10 months 1 week 5 days 14 hours ago) and read 5407 times:

Good point Mrniji!

that way they dont have to spend the millions buying a new plane!



"They [Terrorists] never stop thinking about new ways to harm our country and our people, and neither do we." - GWB
User currently offlineBandA From United States of America, joined Aug 2004, 338 posts, RR: 0
Reply 9, posted (9 years 10 months 1 week 5 days 14 hours ago) and read 5390 times:

You mean AF1 has inflight phones that actually work, unlike AI's 744s?

and I heard the toilets dont leak and they've got nice leather padding on the seats. Not sure if they are heated though.



"They [Terrorists] never stop thinking about new ways to harm our country and our people, and neither do we." - GWB
User currently offlineJetjack74 From United States of America, joined Jul 2003, 7405 posts, RR: 50
Reply 10, posted (9 years 10 months 1 week 5 days 12 hours ago) and read 5284 times:
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The aircraft flew LHR-JFK as AI 1 on Monday with a 7pm arrival and then ferried JFK-DOV as AI 345 at 10pm.

I wonder what the parking fees are, JFK vs DOV?

She will ferry back to JFK on Sunday morning as AI 346 before departing to GVA as AI 1

B747-437B, Is it the same flight number from LHR-JFK and JFK-GVA?




Made from jets!
User currently offlineMrniji From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 11, posted (9 years 10 months 1 week 5 days 12 hours ago) and read 5272 times:

B747-437B, Is it the same flight number from LHR-JFK and JFK-GVA?


me not -437B, but just FYI that when the Prime Minister is on board the Flight no is always designated as AI 1 (same with the President/other VVIPs??? - do other persons apart from the aforementioned have the right to travel AI 1, as the Home Minister, National Security Advisor etc.?? - Hopefully not) - Hence, the Flight no LHR-JFK and JFK-GVA is the same


Just wondering why the flight number changes from AI 001 to the random numbers AI 345 and 346 respectively.. or is that a hint that AI will soon order the A 345 and 346 series??  Big thumbs up

[Edited 2004-09-21 18:57:19]

[Edited 2004-09-21 18:58:05]

User currently offlineB747-437B From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 12, posted (9 years 10 months 1 week 5 days 10 hours ago) and read 5153 times:

As of FY2004, the Government of India is paying AI a fixed sum equivalent to the cost of leasing ~200 days worth of VIP charters aboard a 744. The aircraft provided is then theirs to do with as they please, whether they want to fly it or park it in Delaware. AI has a surplus of 744s right now anyway (10 active, 7.5 aircraft rotation) so it works out fine.

Is it the same flight number from LHR-JFK and JFK-GVA?

Yes. Any AI flight that carries the Head of State (President) or Head of Government (Prime Minister) is designated as AI 1 (they have a very elegant and fancy logo "Air India ONE" for all the related frills, etc...).

Why does the Indian PM need a Boeing 744?

Manmohan Singh actually asked about using a smaller aircraft for his trip to Bangkok earlier this year, but evidently it works out more efficient to use a single large 744 than multiple smaller planes to transport the ~200 strong press corps that accompanies him on these trips.

Just wondering why the flight number changes from AI 001 to the random numbers AI 345 and 346 respectively..

Not AI 001 but AI 1. They are very fussy about that actually. And no idea why 345 and 346 were chosen, but they used them last year as well when Vajpayee had spent a week visiting the US and they parked in Dover.

I wonder what the parking fees are, JFK vs DOV?

Since Dover is an AFB, its possible the parking is gratis courtesy the USAF. I know that IAF extends the same courtesy to visiting US dignitaries on the IAF ramp at Delhi when they are visiting India.

do other persons apart from the aforementioned have the right to travel AI 1, as the Home Minister, National Security Advisor etc.?? - Hopefully not

The flight is only designated as AI 1 when the PM/President is aboard. On this trip he is being accompanied by both the Foreign Minister and the National Security Advisor - but if they were traveling without him they would only get a normal First Class seat or for shorter trips, one of the Indian Air Force VIP 737s.

Why does India not get a permanent VIP Long range Aircraft.

The idea was floated a couple years ago but they determined that the costs of setting up and training Air Force pilots for a 747 doesn't make sense, especially since most domestic airports can't even handle a 747 so its use would be very limited. Additionally, since they would only be acquiring one plane - a backup aircraft would have to be provided by Air India anyway to cater for any tech snags - which means AI would still have the hassles of keeping a crew on ready reserve at all times during VIP trips. On the other hand, if they got a smaller long-range jet, then a seperate charter would become neccessary for the Press Corps that accompany the PM/President.

Instead, it was decided that from FY2004 the Government would compensate AI for a fixed number of days per year of VIP aircraft usage and AI would factor that into the fleet planning accordingly. That is why you will almost always find a spare 744 in the schedule (outside of sked mx checks) when no VIP flights are planned.

how long will it be out of service, regarding change of configuration, security and pi pa po..?

VT-ESN has actually been out of service for most of September. She took President Kalam down to Dar-Es-Salaam, Durban, Jo'burg and Cape Town last week. Reconfig is usually a one-day job on each end - the interiors are all modular so no real hassles installing them.


User currently offlineJaysit From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 13, posted (9 years 10 months 1 week 5 days 10 hours ago) and read 5130 times:

"but evidently it works out more efficient to use a single large 744 than multiple smaller planes to transport the ~200 strong press corps that accompanies him on these trips."

Why can't the 200 strong press corps take Air India commercial or Thai or Druk Air for that matter?


User currently offlineKilavoud From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 14, posted (9 years 10 months 1 week 5 days 9 hours ago) and read 5073 times:

Why do you always want to understand what Indians are doing and why ?
They just do it another way. Nothing more.
Kilavoud.


User currently offlineB747-437B From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 15, posted (9 years 10 months 1 week 5 days 9 hours ago) and read 5055 times:

Why can't the 200 strong press corps take Air India commercial or Thai or Druk Air for that matter?

Because its not always that easy to find a commercial flight to follow the PM's flexible itinerary.

Take yesterday for example. The original plan was for an early lunch meeting with Tony Blair followed by a 2pm departure from Heathrow for JFK. Due to the meeting running long, they only got off the ground at Heathrow around 445pm and into JFK at 7pm. This morning he was scheduled to have breakfast with George Bush at the Waldorf-Astoria at 8am. If the press had followed the original plan and booked maybe a 4pm flight to JFK, they would have been up shit creek without a paddle on either end.

And while even these may be doable fine, take some other itineraries that the VIPs have flown that involve trips between such commercial aviation hubs as Khartoum and Sofia, Zanzibar and Durban, etc... A press charter simply makes the most sense and combining them with AI 1 is a rare case of Indian efficiency!


User currently offlineETStar From Canada, joined Jan 2004, 2103 posts, RR: 7
Reply 16, posted (9 years 10 months 1 week 5 days 9 hours ago) and read 5024 times:

Why does the Indian PM need a Boeing 744? Even the US President makes do with a Boeing 742.

Because the US president cannot afford a 744  Big grin


User currently offlineMrniji From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 17, posted (9 years 10 months 1 week 5 days 6 hours ago) and read 4910 times:

Sean, as usual your information rocks! Many thanks!  Wow!

So no one believes my hint with the designated AI 345 and 346 for DOV-JFK vv. and the upcoming airbus-order for the aforementioned fleet types...  Crying


User currently offlineThunderbird1 From United States of America, joined Jun 2004, 225 posts, RR: 0
Reply 18, posted (9 years 10 months 1 week 5 days 6 hours ago) and read 4888 times:

VT-ESN has actually been out of service for most of September

I've noticed that ESN seems to carry most of the PM-ferrying load nowadays (it seemed to be EGC in the past, when they used the -200). Any particular reason for this?


User currently offlineDulleswatcher From United States of America, joined Sep 2000, 41 posts, RR: 0
Reply 19, posted (9 years 10 months 1 week 5 days 2 hours ago) and read 4785 times:

I appreciate very much this thread and the informative posts contained therein. That having been said, I cannot stress enough how dangerous it is in this day and time to reveal even the approximate future wheels up/wheels down times and locations of an aircraft carrying senior Indian officials. As we saw in Mombassa and Baghdad, terrorists are increasingly proficient with shoulder-launched missiles. Given terrorists proven hatred of India, it seems most prudent that such information be withheld from the public in future.


Sic Semper Tyrannis
User currently offlineSkyguy From United States of America, joined Feb 2004, 480 posts, RR: 0
Reply 20, posted (9 years 10 months 1 week 5 days 2 hours ago) and read 4748 times:

Dulleswatcher: I completely agree with you, it's innocent and interesting information for us aviation/airline enthusiasts but not for others who have other warped intentions.


"Those who talk, do not know, and those who know, do not talk."
User currently offlineCha747 From United States of America, joined Dec 2003, 784 posts, RR: 6
Reply 21, posted (9 years 10 months 1 week 5 days 2 hours ago) and read 4660 times:

Sean - or anybody else in the Dover area. Can you see the plane on the tarmac or is it in some hangar or somewhere in a remote location on base? I live about 60 minutes from Dover and would consider going to see it if it were visible from the highway (1 or 13...I can never remember which until I get there). Anyway, they'd probably shoot first, then ask questions when they see some random brown person taking pics of an AFB.  Wink/being sarcastic


You land a million planes safely, then you have one little mid-air and you never hear the end of it - Pushing Tin
User currently offlineIndianguy From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 22, posted (9 years 10 months 1 week 4 days 22 hours ago) and read 4118 times:

I dont think that India needs to go in for any long range VVIP aircraft. The current arrangement of leasing out aircraft from AI is the best solution for long-haul VVIP travel.

For the shorter haul travel, the govt should consider purchasing a mix of short haul jets in the sub-100 seat category like the ERJ170 and som ein the sub-50 seat category like th ERJ-145. Both these aircraft haev the range to operate to every corner of India and can land at almost 300 airports within the country. These could serve as the perfect replacement for the B737-200's currently being operated by the IAF's signals sqn.

-Roy


User currently offlineB747-437B From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 23, posted (9 years 10 months 1 week 4 days 22 hours ago) and read 4087 times:

That having been said, I cannot stress enough how dangerous it is in this day and time to reveal even the approximate future wheels up/wheels down times and locations of an aircraft carrying senior Indian officials

Actually this info has been on the Geneva aviation enthusiasts website at http://www.dpts.org/expectedvisitors.html for longer than AI operations has had the information, including exact slot times!!! I've been careful not to post any unpublished VVIP movement information since your caution to me last year.


User currently offlineB747-437B From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 24, posted (9 years 10 months 1 week 4 days 22 hours ago) and read 4082 times:

These could serve as the perfect replacement for the B737-200's currently being operated by the IAF's signals sqn.

AFAIK, the IAF had chosen to acquire BBJs to replace the current 732s but I'm not sure of the progress of that order.


25 AirbusfanYYZ : I remember reading in the local papers on my last trip to India in Dec '02 that the IAF had actually signed orders for three BBJs. But that was in "Th
26 Jasepl : LOL Kaz! Almost all of our newspapers would fail the seriousness/reliability test these days! Both the Times & the Eco Times (once considered the most
27 Jaysit : Youre right on the money about the Times and the Eco Times. All that the latter talks about is how BPO male employees are seeking hookers on line. Its
28 Dulleswatcher : Sean, I am deeply impressed and grateful for your reply and clarification above. As for the Swiss nitwits who posted slot times, they clearly don't un
29 Jfkviaphx : I'll answer the JFK question about the General Assembly flights. There is not enough room to store all the aircraft at JFK. They have been coming in a
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