While IndiGo’s pilots have been expressing their discontentment at the low-cost carrier’s failure to restore their salaries, Ronojoy Dutta, CEO, IndiGo admits that the issue is a sensitive and rather difficult one.
The aviation sector is struggling with rising fuel costs. However, to deal with this, the airlines cannot really raise the ticket prices as that will discourage air travel, which has only just picked up after the pandemic-imposed travel restrictions have been lifted.
Turbine fuel accounts for a significant portion of any airline’s operational expenses. Last week, the cost of this fuel was increased by two per cent.
However, the CEO has assured the employees that the Company will continue to review the salaries and make wage adjustments according to the airline’s performance, profits and competition.
While assuring the employees that their interests remained a priority for IndiGo, the CEO also pointed out that they have to tread carefully to deal with the inflationary conditions and rising fuel prices, even while ensuring that air travel continues to grow. He explained that the solution to this inflation in costs does not lie in simply charging the customer more, because that will again discourage air travel and adversely affect the sector and revenues.
In an official communication, the staff have been requested to go out of their way to serve their corporate customers well so that they are not lost to competition.
On 5 April, 2022, the pilots who have been facing a 28 per cent pay cut ever since the pandemic struck, went on mass leave, reporting sick, in protest. Following this, some of them were suspended by the airline for violating the Company’s code of conduct.