Uncertainty looms over Kingfisher resuming operations on October 5

By: admin
Updated: 04 Oct 2012 03:01 AM

New Delhi: Hopes
of ailing Kingfisher Airlines resuming operations tomorrow faded today
with last ditch efforts by the management to persuade striking engineers
and pilots to return to work failing to end the deadlock over the issue of
non-payment of salaries for last seven months.

Civil Aviation
Minister Ajit Singh also expressed doubts whether the carrier, facing a
partial lockout, will be able to fly from tomorrow.

Airline CEO Sanjay Agarwal and other top officials of the carrier held a
meeting with engineers and pilots in Gurgaon today to convince them to
join duty.

Sources said the management offered the March salary
to the employees and promised to pay the remaining six months salary once
the airline is recapitalised.

This offer was rejected by the
engineers and pilots. A similar meeting had taken place in Mumbai
yesterday where the same offer had been made by the airline. The employees
there had also turned down the offer.

Asked by reporters if it is
likely that Kingfisher will resume its flights from tomorrow, Singh said,
"I do not want to make any value judgements. My job as the civil aviation
minister and that of the DGCA is to make sure that before Kingfisher flies
they follow all the safety parameters."

He further maintained
that the airline should be in a position to get its planes certified and
satisfy the DGCA that the schedule which they have given is maintained.

said the flight routes and the winter schedule- which comes in force by
end of October- will also have to be looked into.

"In the winter
schedule we have to consider all the routes and the landing spots. All
these have to be considered afresh," Singh said.

Kingfisher has
been saddled with a huge loss of Rs 8,000 crore and a debt burden of
another over Rs 7,000 crore, a large part of which it has not serviced
since January.

Several of its aircraft have been either taken
away by its lessors or grounded by the Airports Authority of India for
non-payment of dues during the past few months.

Watch: Strike
forces KFA to cancel flights