The flight AI 173 from Delhi with 230 passengers on board landed here at 5.40 am with airport traffic control tower lit in the Indian tricolour to welcome the maiden Air India flight to the city. The passengers applauded when the aircraft touched down.
A number of officials from the US and India, including Indian Consul General Venkatesan Ashok, attended a formal ribbon cutting ceremony to mark beginning of the services. "It is a remarkable day and today is a great day for Air India," Ashok told the gathering at the airport.
The city mayor's office declared this day as 'Air India Day', a symbolic gesture to celebrate the arrival of the first direct flight from India here. With this non-stop flight to San Francisco from Delhi, Air India became the first domestic airline to provide a direct air connection to the US west coast.
Air India has started three flights per week on Sundays, Wednesdays, and Fridays. Prime Minister Narendra Modi during his visit to Silicon Valley in September had announced to connect Silicon Valley with India through a direct flight.
"Starting a direct flight within two months was a daunting task but we made it possible with the cooperation from US officials," an Air India official said.

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