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HindustanTimes Fri,18 Apr 2014

Aviation

DGCA not convinced that KFA revival plan enough for a restart
HT Correspondent, Hindustan Times
New Delhi, January 11, 2013
First Published: 21:57 IST(11/1/2013)
Last Updated: 22:04 IST(11/1/2013)

The revival plan proposed by the bleeding Kingfisher Airlines (KFA) is not enough to get the carrier back in the skies, a top Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) official said.

The aviation ministry top brass is not convinced that the Rs. 650 crore fund, which the Vijay Mallya-promoted airline plans to invest, to resume operations may guarantee an efficient and reliable service.

“The airline has to demonstrate its capability to run efficiently,” said the DGCA official, who did not wish to be named. “It has not provided a convincing plan to resume operations.”

Kingfisher has not operated a single flight since October 1 and its flying licence expired on December 31.

“We want an airline to operate in consistent, efficient and reliable manner,” he said. “The airlines’ revival plan had lots of issues regarding lenders and staff payment that we felt may not lead to reliable services.”

The official added that the plan had no provision for payment to airport operators, who want their dues to be paid before the airlines starts flying again.

Also, payment plan of salary dues to employees was in a phased manner, which “we felt may not lead to reliable services”. Most KFA employees haven’t been paid since May last year.

“If the employees were not paid, then the staff may stop working again, which may cause inconvenience to passengers. There should be no inconvenience to passengers,” he said.

Four of Kingfisher’s leased Airbus 320 aircraft had been deregistered by the aviation regulator on the request of lessor two years back, he added.

Mallya wrote to staff on Wednesday, saying he had submitted a detailed restart plan, which would be provided by the airline’s parent UB Group.


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