AirAsia plans to launch an Indian airline with local partnership as the desire to earn share in one of Asia’s biggest aviation markets trumps fears of a hypercompetitive industry full of bureaucratic obstacles.

AirAsia will hold 49% in the venture…it has broached the issue with Videocon Group and the talks are at a preliminary stage.

Founder Tony Fernandes’ interest in India adds an intriguing twist to the scrappy battle for market share in India between low-fare airlines IndiGo and SpiceJet, the state-owned Air India, and Jet Airways, which has full-service and low-fare options. Heavy debt and a cut-throat price war had savaged the balance sheets of many airlines.

Photo Credit: Air Asia 737 PK-AWC in Kuching, Malaysia. Simon Clancy / Flickr.com