As the Air India (AI) strike entered its eighth day, the striking pilots and the government were finally back on the talking table. Representatives of the Indian Commercial Pilots Association (ICPA) met senior civil aviation ministry officials on Wednesday with talks likely to continue on Thursday as well.
The strike has caused losses to the tune of around R100 crore to the AI, which has so far, sacked seven pilots and suspended six others.
“Talks will continue tomorrow. Many points have been covered. There are one or two points left,” civil aviation secretary Nasim Zaidi said. “We are happy to have finally met and held talks. The talks are moving forward and going in a positive direction. we will meet again tomorrow,” said Rishabh Kapur, general secretary, ICPA.
The ministry top brass met here on Wednesday and the Prime Minister’s office was briefed about the developments.
“To minimize the inconvenience to passengers, AI has taken a number of measures, including flying 18 chartered flights (16 domestic and two international) with aircraft taken from Kingfisher Airlines and Air Arabia. Over 12,000 AI passengers have been transferred to other domestic and international carriers at the four metros,” AI said in a statement.
“AI is further looking for inducting capacity on wet lease basis. A tender advertisement inviting request for proposal is being issued in newspapers May 5,” the statement said.