Free Press Journal

Air India pilots threaten to stop flying unless dues are paid

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Mumbai: Air India pilots have threatened that they will stop flying if they are not paid the flying allowance immediately. Incidentally, the allowance comprises 70 per cent of their salary package. The pilots are currently being paid only the basic salary.

The airline has reportedly delayed salary payments of around 11,000 employees for the fifth month in a row. The July salary for the staff was disbursed on August 14. “All the employees of Air India, including pilots, received their salary on 14th August 2018. As you are aware the salary of a pilot in Air India only constitutes thirty per cent of the total package. Every month we are being ignored while the company is paying the rest of the employees in full. It does not pay the Flying allowance to pilots and cabin crew which forms the major part of our total earnings,” reads the letter by Indian Commercial Pilots’ Association.

“We would like to inform you if the flying allowance is not paid immediately, we may not be available for flying duties,” the pilots have warned in a communication to Air India’s director of finance on Friday. ICPA represent over 700 pilots of the airline’s Airbus 320 family fleet. Significantly, the loss-making carrier has been facing cash crunch since the government stopped funding the airline following its decision to privatise it last year. However, it failed to get a suitor by the required deadline, forcing it to put the privatisation plans on the backburner and reviving the capital infusion plan.