Thursday, April 28, 2011

HC tells Air India pilots to end stir

  | New Delhi, April 27, 2011 | Updated 19:04 IST

The Delhi High Court has cracked the whip on 800 striking Air India pilots, asking them to end the stir immediately.
Twenty-four flights have been cancelled due to the flash strike.
Air India has terminated six pilots including the president and general secretary of the Indian Commercial Pilots Association (ICPA).
The pilots belonging to the ICPA went on a strike staring midnight. These pilots work were employed by Indian Airlines and have now been brought under Air India umbrella following the merger of the two airline companies.
The ICPA pilots want pay parity with the Air India cadre pilots. Taking a strong stand against the pilots, the Air India management has derecognised the ICPA. It has sealed its offices in Delhi and Mumbai.
The president of the pilots' union, Captain A.S. Bhinder, said that the strike was not just for pay parity, but against the Air India chairman-cum-managing director Arvind Jhadav.
Meanwhile, Civil Aviation Minister Vyalar Ravi has sent a stern message to the striking pilots, calling their action illegal and irresponsible.
Pilots write to PM
The striking pilots have written to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh seeking his intervention into the issue.
The ICPA has said that the Air India management is responsible for the mismanagement and losses. The pilots' association has also sought a CBI probe into the matter.
In the letter, the ICPA has urged the government to investigate all the shortcomings of the current AI management and have held them accountable for the same.
ICPA wants the CBI to probe the cancellation and withdrawal of profitable routes and the bilaterals given to either private or foreign carriers.
The union also wants a probe into the under-utilisation of aircraft.
ICPA says that the intention of the management seems well scripted to buy new airplanes, upgrade the machinery, at a whopping Rs 800 crore and kill the morale of the employees, making way to sell the airline in distress.


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