Shortly after take-off, air traffic control declared an emergency aboard the aircraft which was carrying 213 people, said Vaibhav Tiwari, a spokesman at Mumbai's international airport.
"The pilot noticed some technical glitch in the engine," Tiwari told AFP, adding that the plane turned around and landed safely at the Mumbai airport about half an hour after taking off early on Monday.
He said the passengers of flight AF 217 were put up in a hotel and would take the next scheduled flight by Air France.
An Air France spokesman confirmed that the Airbus A330 had returned to the airport. "The plane turned around after a problem with a malfunctioning engine," the spokesman told AFP.
The airline spokesman did not disclose the nature of the engine problem but said it was "not a particularly unusual incident".