The members of the Guild have communicated that the non-receipt of salary since the beginning of this year has made it impossible for them to pay their EMIs, their wards’ education fees, the medical bills of their aged parents, and fulfil other financial commitments. This is no doubt causing them a lot of mental stress, which is not ideal for pilots who are responsible for the safety of so many passengers.
The Guild represents approx. 1100 of the 1600 pilots working for Jet Airways. The NAG had earlier announced a strike starting 1 April, which was later put off till 15 April. The members of NAG have been demanding immediate release of pending salaries as well as clear details about the future course of action.
A group of lenders, led by the State Bank of India has now taken matters in its hands with 50 per cent holding, and putting in funds of about Rs 1500 crore to ensure that operations continue.
Jet Airways has been in financial doldrums for some time now with delayed salaries and dissatisfaction amongst the staff disturbing the smooth operations of the Airline. However, despite all the difficulties, the crew had been fairly cooperative and patient last year despite the schedule for salary disbursement, that too in batches, being changed several times.
This year, the pilots seem to have really reached the end of the tether having received no salary since January, and have been writing to the senior authorities, SBI as well as the Ministry of Aviation to come up with some solution soon.