Addressing problems constructively: Aviation minister

Addressing these problems constructively: Aviation minister on layoffs and pay cut in airlines

 Civil Aviation Minister Hardeep Singh Puri. Credit: PTI Photo

Days after GoAir announced layoff of expat pilots and IndiGo declared pay cut for its senior employees due to precipitous fall in revenues amid coronavirus pandemic, Civil Aviation Minister Hardeep Singh Puri said on Friday that the Central government is "addressing all these problems" constructively.

After a meeting here with Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman, Puri told reporters he did discuss with her the matters related to the virus' impact on Indian aviation sector.

"We are addressing all these problems. We are addressing them constructively," the minister replied when asked about the layoffs by private airlines due to falling revenues in light of coronavirus pandemic.

GoAir had on Wednesday said that it has terminated the contracts of expat pilots amid curtailed operations due to coronavirus.

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Citing "unprecedented" decline in air travel, the budget carrier had on Tuesday announced the suspension of international operations and offered leave without pay programme for its staff on a rotational basis.

Meanwhile, in an e-mail to IndiGo employees, its CEO Ronojoy Dutta stated on Thursday: "With the precipitous drop in revenues, the very survival of the airline industry is now at stake... We have to pay careful attention to our cash flow so that we do not run out of cash."

"With a great deal of reluctance and a deep sense of regret, we are therefore instituting pay cuts for all employees, excluding Bands A and B, starting April 1, 2020," the chief executive officer said.

Band A and B are the lowest brackets in salary class in which most of the employees fall.

"I am personally taking a 25 per cent pay cut, SVPs (senior vice presidents) and above are taking 20 per cent, VPs (vice presidents) and cockpit crew are taking a 15 per cent pay cut, AVPs (assistant vice presidents), Bands D along with cabin crew will take 10 per cent and Band Cs 5 per cent," Dutta noted.

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