Amid crisis, Jet Airways says `confident` of resolving the current situation

Roman Schwartz
March 25, 2019

However, certain suspended service until April 30 is now listed as not available for flights on or after May 12.

Recently, aviation regulator, the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) said that Jet Airways has only 41 aircraft in its fleet for operations out of around 120 planes and that there may be further attrition in the fleet size and flights ahead.

The flights which have been suspended from Mumbai for this period include services to Abu Dhabi (12 weekly), Bahrain (4-7 weekly), and Dammam (14 weekly).

"In order to fill the gap from the reduced fleet size after the grounding of the Max fleet, the company is in discussion with various lessors globally to induct aircraft", the airline said in a filing to the BSE. A Delhi-Mumbai flight booked about 24 hours in advance on Friday is about 20% costlier than a similar flight booked last week one day before the journey, according to data available from online travel portals.

The airline has discontinued services from Delhi to Abu Dhabi (nine a week), Dammam (14 weekly), Dhaka (11), Hong Kong and Riyadh (seven each a week) up to April 30, said the airline source.

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A New Delhi-based pilot of the airline, who has already applied to other airlines for recruitment, said his financial position has become untenable since his children's quarterly school fees are due in April. Source said these services will remain suspended till April 30.

Earlier this week, SBI Chairman Rajnish Kumar along with Civil Aviation Secretary Pradeep Singh Kharola and Principal Secretary to Prime Minister Nripendra Misra apprised Finance Minister Arun Jaitley about the developments at Jet Airways.

The pilots said even EMI payments on vehicle and home loans might become hard in the present circumstance. "It will make huge sense to find an operator in India for these grounded planes than taking them elsewhere", said the person who spoke on condition of anonymity.

"Pilots will stop flying jet planes from April 1st, 2019 if the company does not disburse due salaries and take concrete decisions", a spokesperson for the National Aviator's Guild, a pilots union, told AFP.

For the past few weeks, passengers have been venting their ire on social media as the airline's flight cancellations have increased gradually due to the rising number of grounded aircraft.

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