Jet staff wants representation in new mgmt, writes to SBI chief

MUMBAI: Jet Airways staff and officers body Monday sought representation in the interim management committee which will oversee the functioning of the airline under the banks-led management.

The committee under the overall supervision of the airline’s board, was announced after founder Naresh Goyal was forced to step down from the board as also as the chairman of the 25-year-old airline earlier in the day.

After weeks of speculations and uncertainty over the future of the airline, which has grounded over 80 planes due to financial woes, the airline’s board earlier in the day approved a resolution plan formulated by SBI-led domestic lenders to whom it owes over Rs 8,200 crore.

The resolution also involves the banks extending an emergency funding of Rs 1,500 crore to the airline.

“It would be appropriate for you to include two representatives from us so as to better understand our concerns about the company, and also to enable the new shareholders to confidently expect a highly empowered and engaged workforce,” All-India Jet Airways Officers & Staff Association president and NCP lawmaker in the state legislature, Kiran Pawaskar said in a letter to SBI chairman Rajnish Kumar.

He said for the past some years, the airline management has not been addressing many issues that the employees have been facing. These include issues of wage/salary revision from April 2018 and other issues like bonus and ex-gratia payments, leave and leave benefits, among others, he said.

While Jet has been regular on payment to a large part of its workforce, it has been delaying salaries to the senior management people, pilots and engineers since last August. These categories of staff have not been paid for almost four months now, he said.

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The association’s efforts at getting redressal from the management has unfortunately been very unsuccessful in view of the complete absence of information on the current financial crisis, he said in the letter.

“We are extremely concerned about the allegations of financial mismanagement among others, including tax evasion which we understand are under examination of various statutory authorities,” Pawaskar alleged.

Recently, the association had approached the management to discuss issues and it was advised that the airline was undergoing shareholding changes under a resolution plan, he added.


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