Govt sweetens deal to attract bidders for Pawan Hans

NEW DELHI, July 21: Having failed to privatise Pawan Hans last fiscal, the government has significantly diluted the terms of sale pertaining to employee retrenchment, asset sale and tax liability to attract bidders this time around, sources said.
As per the revised terms of sale proposed by the government, the successful bidder would be required to retain all permanent employees for a period of at least one year, as against two years stipulated earlier. The Government has also decided to indemnify the buyer against Rs 577 crore worth tax liability of Pawan Hans in case an ongoing tax dispute is decided against the company.
The revised terms of sale have also reduced the time period for stripping of assets of Pawan Hans by the buyer to two years, from three years specified earlier. The relaxation in norms will provide greater freedom to the successful bidder to manage Pawan Hans, the sources said. The Government had last fiscal tried to sell the helicopter service provider but no buyer came forward. The government holds 51 per cent stake in Pawan Hans, which has a fleet of 43 helicopters. The remaining 49 per cent is with ONGC. (PTI)