Flight of engineers hit Kingfisher Air
About 80 engineers have quit the bleeding Kingfisher Airlines during the past four months due to non-payment of salaries by the near-bankrupt carrier, sources said on Tuesday.india Updated: Jun 26, 2012 23:04 IST
About 80 engineers have quit the bleeding Kingfisher Airlines during the past four months due to non-payment of salaries by the near-bankrupt carrier, sources said on Tuesday.
Some more engineers are in the process of bidding good-bye to Vijay Mallya-led carrier, they said, adding, “if the trend continues, the airline may face severe shortage of engineers.”
Also, around 200 engineers reported sick in April this year protesting delay in salary payments.
“We don’t know what to do next,” a senior pilot said on the condition of anonymity. “This has become a routine. It is June end and we haven’t been paid for February. There is no one to listen to us. The aviation ministry and the regulator are not prepared to take any action. Just how long can this continue?”.Most KFA pilots HT spoke to said things had become more difficult as other airlines had, for the time being, stopped hiring fresh pilots. "A low-cost carrier that was giving huge bonuses to joining pilots has put a freeze. We have no option but carry on," another pilot said.
The airline, however, maintained that it has “sufficient number” of engineers to maintain its fleet.
“We have sufficient number of engineers to support our operations,” said a Kingfisher Airlines spokesperson.
Meanwhile, the airline has defaulted on lease rentals of around Rs. 1,000 crore and lessors have taken back 34 of its aircraft, Press Trust of India reported.
KFA did not respond to mails from HT seeking comments for the story. The aircraft were taken back between March and June. Another 15 aircraft of the airline were aground due to want of spares, the report said.
(With agency inputs)