31 March 2019: Jet Airways pilots on Sunday deferred their strike scheduled for April 1. At a National Aviator’s Guild (NAG) meeting, pilots decided to State bank of India (SBI) management more time which is why the strike has been deferred to April 15.
“SBI management has come in just 6 days ago and yet to settle down. We wanted to give the new stakeholder fair chance. Adding to this our remaining salary for December was credited on Saturday. With the reports in media that SBI is trying to revive the company and assurance by CEO in writing, we have decided to defer the strike,” said Captain Karan Chopra, president NAG.
Adding to this, Jet Airways pilots have demanded to meet the SBI chairperson and hear the bank’s plan to revive Jet Airways.
“We request the SBI chairman to meet us and hear us out. This will give us clarity on future plans,” said Chopra.
NAG, which claims to represent around 1,100 of the total 1,600 pilots, last month announced its members will not fly from April 1 unless their pending salaries were cleared and there is clarity on future payments by March 31.
Jet Airways on Saturday said it will pay December salaries to pilots and aircraft maintenance engineers but for now cannot pay more recent overdue wages.
It was Jet Airways chief executive officer Vinay Dubey who had earlier sent the communication to pilots and engineers on Saturday that Jet Airways was unable to clear the remaining 3 months salaries of the staff immediately.
“The board of directors in the management team is working as fast as possible to implement a resolution plan agreed upon with a consortium of Indian lenders to install the much needed stability of a corporation to build a sustainable future for the airline,” the communication read.
Once India’s leading full service carrier, Jet struggled to compete with low-cost carriers in recent years. In the past few weeks, its chairman Naresh Goyal stepped down from the airline’s board and lenders stepped in to rescue the airline from the brink of bankruptcy.