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Kingfisher staff protest as partial lock-out is extended

Mumbai, Oct 5, 2012 (IANS) 14:15 IST
Kingfisher employees, engineers and pilots take part in a candle light march from airport to Kingfisher House in Mumbai on Thursday evening. PTI
Scores of Kingfisher Airlines employees, including pilots, engineers and technicians, Friday took out a procession to the airlines office here to demand their pending salaries and other dues.

The protest came a day after the airlines management sought to increase pressure on its striking employees by extending its partial lock-out till Oct 12. "We are making three demands only - salary, salary, salary. Everything will be normal as soon as the management clears our pending dues since we are not able to run our households," a pilot taking part in the procession told IANS on the condition of anonymity a day after a KFA staffer's wife committed suicide in New Delhi Thursday.

The suicide sent shock waves among the airlines staff, many of whom have not received their salaries for months. The pilot said that KFA staff are also concerned about the management decision to extend the partial lock-out by another week.

Announcing the extension of the lock-out here just before midnight, the cash-strapped airlines blamed the employees, including pilots, aircraft maintenance engineers and technicians for the partial lock-out - already implemented since Oct 1.

"We regret that the illegal strike has still not been withdrawn and normalcy has not been restored in the company, thereby continuing to cripple and paralyse the working of the entire airline. In light of this, Kingfisher Airlines Ltd. has been constrained to extend the partial lock-out up to Oct 12 or up to such earlier date on which the said illegal strike is called off, and the management is informed about the same," the airlline statement said.

The developments came barely hours after the management and representatives of the striking employees held an unsuccessful round of talks in Gurgaon Thursday.

Civil Aviation Minister Ajit Singh, adopting a tough stand on the issue, also declared that the airline would have to take the Directorate General of Civil Aviation's (DGCA) permission if it wants to operate services in view the ongoing crisis.

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