AirAsia India picks Tata Power's Deepak Mahendra as CFO

AirAsia India picks Tata Powers Deepak Mahendra as CFO
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Mumbai: AirAsia India today appointed Tata group veteran Deepak Mahendra as its new chief financial officer with immediate effect. His appointment confirms media speculation that the

Mumbai: AirAsia India today appointed Tata group veteran Deepak Mahendra as its new chief financial officer with immediate effect. His appointment confirms media speculation that the Tatas would have a larger say in the running of the low-cost carrier that is mired in attritions at the top level and an ongoing Enforcement Directorate (ED) probe into allegations of money laundering.

Mahendra replaces Ankur Khanna, who quit last month within ten months of joining the airline, after the ED summoned him in connection with the alleged financial wrongdoings at the airline under its earlier head. The ED is probing a Rs 22 crore scam in the airline. Mahendra has been with Tata Power as the chief of corporate finance and accounts since 2008. He started his career with Tata Steel. A chartered accountant, Mahendra brings with him over three decades of experience in the finance function in diverse organisations.

In two years of operations, AirAsia India has lost or replaced about ten top executives, including the first chief executive Mittu Chandilya, chief financial officer Vijay Gopalan and commercial director Gaurav Rathore, apart from the heads of flight operations, operations control, HR, cabin crew, security, group operations and corporate quality.

AirAsia India currently flies to 11 destinations with its two hubs in Bengaluru and New Delhi. The airline will start flying to Srinagar and Bagdogra next week. AirAsia India is a 49:49 percent joint venture between Tata Sons and AirAsia. Tata veteran S Ramadorai (chairman of the airline) and R Venkataramanan, the managing trustee of Tata Trusts in their individual capacity own 0.5 per cent and 1.5 per cent respectively in the airline.

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