India's government has appointed Arvind Jadhav as managing director and chairman of Air India.

A spokeswoman in Mumbai for the carrier confirms the government has appointed Jadhav as managing director and chairman.

She says he started today and he was previously principal secretary infrastructure development for the southern Indian state of Karnataka.

Air India had an interim chairman and managing director for a few days and before that Air India's boss was Raghu Menon who was in the job for about one year.

One of the challenges Air India faces is completing its merger with its state-owned sibling Indian Airlines.

Air India also faces stiff competition from privately-owned Indian carriers which have been winning market share.

Source: Air Transport Intelligence news