The recent 10-day strike by Air India pilots, which grounded thousands of passengers earlier this month, is now taking a toll on the airline’s employees.
The national carrier on Wednesday issued a circular saying that it will not be able to pay staff salaries before the 10th of every month until losses incurred owing to the strike are recovered.
The strike had grounded 90% of the airline’s domestic operations and led to losses close to Rs200 crore.
Sources said that the management is also likely to cut the salaries of pilots affiliated to the Indian Commercial Pilots’ Association (ICPA), the union that spearheaded the strike. “Now our colleagues are also cursing us,” said an upset ICPA member.
Worse, nine pilots, who are ICPA office bearers and were sacked by the airline during the strike, are yet to be reinstated.
On Wednesday, the ICPA approached civil aviation minister Vayalar Ravi alleging that the management is yet to re-instate the nine pilots.
The union’s letter to the minister stated that cancelling of termination orders was one of the main conditions of the agreement it signed with the government before calling off the strike.
“This is the reason the ICPA had asked for the ouster of chairman and managing director Arvind Jadhav as his continued presence at the helm of affairs is a sure recipe for disaster of industrial relations,” said captain Rishabh Kapur, general secretary, ICPA, who is one of the sacked pilots.
The union also said that it had reported the violation of the agreement to Prashant Sukul, joint secretary, civil aviation ministry, who was part of government team that signed it on Monday but his intervention has made no difference. “This is nothing short of defiance of your high office backed by the power of the government,” said Kapur.
The AI spokesperson refused to comment on the matter.