As the agitation by Air India’s executive pilots entered the second day, the airlines on Sunday cancelled around 13 morning flights, including six international ones, originating from here.
Seven domestic flights to Kolkata, Lucknow, Srinagar, Raipur, Nagpur, Chennai, Mumbai and Ahmedabad, and six international ones to Dubai, Bangkok, Kathmandu, Singapore and Kabul were cancelled as the pilots of these airlines reported sick.
“As per the contingency plan, we have cancelled flights on those sectors which have low passenger loads,” an Air India official said.
We informed the passengers about the cancellation of flights and also made adequate arrangement of funds, so that there is no shortage of cash in case they go for refund claims, the official added.
“Keeping in view the agitation by the executive (senior) pilots, we reduced our seat availability from 37,000 to 22,000 per day,” Air India spokesperson Jitendra Bhargava said.
Only Air India (domestic) pilots are participating in the strike, Mr. Bhargava said.
Protesting against a cut of up to 50 per cent in their performance-linked incentives (PLI), which according to them would actually end up in a 70 per cent cut in their salaries, and payment of their due salaries of the last three months, senior pilots have boycotted their work by reporting sick since Saturday.
The airlines on Saturday cancelled 15 flights, including three international ones, after the agitating pilots refused to report to their duty.
Air India CMD Arvind Jadhav will meet the agitating pilots in Mumbai to “address their concerns,” the airlines said in a statement.
However, the pilots were in denial mode saying any negotiation would take place only when the management withdraws the directive of a cut in their PLIs.