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   Vol. 14  No. 26
Monday March 23, 2015

Namaste Lufthansa India

Namaste Lufthansa India
(L-R) India's Minister for Civil Aviation Pusapati Ashok Gajapati Raju with Lufthansa Cargo's Helge Krueger-Lorenzen, vice president for Asia Pacific, and Veli Polat, regional director, South Asia & Middle East, at the 'baptism' and naming ceremony.

     A common enough greeting in India is now ready to travel the world—and the credit goes to Lufthansa Cargo. An MD-11 freighter from Lufthansa's cargo fleet with the registration "D-ALCJ" touched down at Delhi International Airport on March 18, 2015, for its official baptism ceremony in which it was named "Namaste India" (translation: "Greetings India")
     The official naming—very much like the naming of a ship—was done by Dr Alexis von Hoensbroech, board member, Products & Sales of Lufthansa Cargo and Pusapati Ashok Gajapathi Raju, union minister of Civil Aviation. In keeping with Indian tradition, a coconut was broken, its water sprinkled on the plane, and tilaks (a mark in red paste) were applied on the foreheads of the two pilots who had flown the plane to Delhi.
     The freighter has been named "Namaste India" to symbolize the significance of India as one of the most important markets for Lufthansa's global air freight services. Said Dr. Alexis von Hoensbroech:      "The 'Namaste India' greeting also illustrates the special bond between Lufthansa Cargo and India. We are proud to be the leading European cargo carrier from India to Europe."
     Lufthansa Cargo has long standing connections with customers in the air cargo industry since 1959 and grew further with the first freighter operations in the 1970s. Today, Lufthansa Cargo offers 59 weekly flights between India and Europe including the services of Lufthansa.
     "Namaste India" is the eighth Lufthansa Cargo aircraft to be renamed in the last few months. The names of the aircraft are based on the winning idea of an open creative competition organized by Lufthansa Cargo to rename their entire fleet in 2013. More than 40,000 potential aeroplane names were received by Lufthansa Cargo within six weeks and the jury decided on the idea of "Saying hello around the world." All the freight aircraft in the Lufthansa Cargo fleet are now being changed to greetings in around 20 languages. The last one that was named was "Konnichiwa Japan" and has been taking Japan around the world.
Tirthankar Ghosh

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