The Delhi high court on Tuesday refused to stay civil aviation minister Ajit Singh’s controversial order to drastically increase the flying hours of Air India cabin crew.
“Since the airlines is going through a financial crisis, it becomes the duty of each and every person... to work as per the established industry practices to enable the respondent airlines to pull through from its present position,” Justice Suresh Kait said, disposing of the petition filed by 50 cabin crew for staying the minister’s September 12, 2012 order.
The directive has resulted in increased duty hours of the cabin crew by varying degrees depending on their sectors.
“The present modalities are not final as the same are still to be worked out, therefore, it is required that the petitioners should also be open to changes in their way of functioning which may include a little variation in their work hours”, said the judge.
Refusing to intervene, the court said it was not inclined to stay the operation of the drastic changes in flight duty time limitations.
Arvind Kumar Sharma, the lawyer for the cabin crew had argued a memorandum of settlement between the Air India and the cabin crew did not permit such drastic increase in working hours and “even otherwise duty time limitations was the sole prerogative of the Directorate General of Civil Aviation.