HC notice to Centre, AI on striking pilots’ plea for pay

Updated - November 16, 2021 11:49 pm IST

Published - June 13, 2012 01:50 pm IST - New Delhi

The Delhi High Court on Wednesday asked the Centre and the Air India management to respond to a plea of striking pilots that their salaries and other pecuniary benefits have not been paid.

“Issue notice to the respondents (the Centre and the Air India). A reply be filed within a week,” Justice S.P. Garg said.

The court was hearing a petition filed by Capt. Sumeer Saini and his fellow pilots seeking payment of their back wages and other perquisites due to them.

Senior advocate Pinki Anand, appearing for the pilots, said, “Salaries of nearly 450 pilots are due. This petition has got nothing to do with the ongoing agitation. The EMIs (to be paid by pilots) and other things are getting delayed.”

The lawyer was responding to the remarks of Justice Garg that “how can their plea be entertained when they are on strike.”

Ms. Anand said that the pilots, who went on a strike from May 7, have not been paid their dues for the period prior to their strike. The court has now posted the matter for further hearing on July 10.

Lalit Bhasin, counsel for the AI management, opposed the plea of the pilots, saying “their plea cannot be entertained till they end their strike.”

Earlier, Justice Reva Khetrapal had issued contempt notices to 67 striking Air India pilots and their representative body, Indian Pilots Guild (IPG), for disobeying its earlier order, by which their stir was termed as illegal.

The High Court had on May 9 restrained over 200 agitating pilots from continuing their “illegal strike”, reporting sick and staging demonstrations, a day after the airline management sacked 10 pilots and derecognised their union.

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