With its flight schedules being hit due to agitation by pilots and other staff to protest delays in salary, Kingfisher Airlines Chairman Vijay Mallya on Tuesday said the airline had spoken to the pilots and the matter was being sorted out.
“We spoke to our pilots. We are sorting it out,” Mr. Mallya told reporters in Parliament House.
“We are facing a serious handicap as our accounts are frozen. We are not asking for bailout from the government but hope for help from banking sector to de-freeze our accounts,” he said.
Terming the flight disruptions as “planned cancellations”, he said, “We do not want inconvenience to our guests.”
The airline had yesterday cancelled around 40 flights across its domestic network and clubbed several others as several pilots and other staffers did not join duty to protest delays in payment of salary.
Maintaining that Kingfisher had flown 80 per cent of its planned schedule yesterday, Kingfisher officials said, “This situation has arisen as a consequence of our bank accounts having been frozen by the tax authorities. We are making all possible efforts to remedy this temporary situation.”
They had said, “The flight loads have reduced because of our limited distribution ability caused by IATA suspension. We are, therefore, combining some of our flights.”
In February, Kingfisher had filed a new schedule to the regulator Director General of Civil Aviation, reducing the number of daily flights by almost two-thirds to 175 with the help of 28 aircraft, down from about 460 flights a day with 64 planes.
It has accumulated losses of Rs. 6,400 crore and piled up debts of Rs. 7,000 crore due to high fuel costs.