12 more Kingfisher pilots quit, to join Qatar Airways | india | Hindustan Times
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12 more Kingfisher pilots quit, to join Qatar Airways

india Updated: Apr 21, 2009 13:56 IST

Close on the heels of about a dozen pilots quitting Kingfisher Airlines, 12 more have put in their papers at the Vijay Mallya-owned air carrier.

"Twelve more pilots have put in their papers and will soon be joining the Gulf-based airline, Qatar Airways," a Kingfisher Airlines' official told PTI in Mumbai.

About a dozen pilots had resigned earlier to join other domestic air-carriers, the official said.

Though Qatar Airways has given job offer letters to 14 pilots from the airlines, two have not yet made up their mind on quitting as they are already flying wide-body aircraft, the official said.

These pilots are supposed to join Qatar Airways by June 8, the official said.

However, these pilots do not come under the ambit of the civil aviation requirement of 2005, which makes it mandatory for pilots to serve a six-month notice prior to leaving their employer.

"The 2005 CAR is applicable to only those pilots who join domestic airlines. In the case of overseas carriers, one-month notice is sufficient, the official said.

In addition, an equal number of pilots are waiting in the wings to hop on to the Gulf-headquartered airline which is expected to take a final call on their candidature soon, the official said. The dozen-odd pilots, who had earlier quit the airline, have petitioned the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) to waive the mandatory six months notice period (for leaving the company) on their service contract.

The pilots said they are seeking the waiver as the airline has already breached their contracts by altering some service conditions including changes in salary structure.

"The CAR was put in place to prevent last minute resignations by pilots. However, the airline is misusing it to stop us from joining other airlines," a petitioner said.

Kingfisher Airline pilots have been up in arms against the management for quite some time now over alleged changes in their service contracts, especially after the airline slashed their salaries by Rs 80,000 in February this year.

The airline had then justified the salary cut by saying that "it was moving towards a productivity-linked compensation structure".

"They have revised the whole salary package downward unilaterally, which is a clear breach of contract," the petitioner said.

"Besides, other benefits have also been lowered like accomodation, transport and even training quality," the petitioner added.