Air India pilot unions have come in support of their peers in Vistara for 70 hour compensation and urged the Tata group leadership to engage with them and address their concerns.

In a letter to Tata Sons chairman N Chandrasekaran on Thursday, the union said that by addressing the concerns, the Tata Group can demonstrate its commitment to fostering a culture of fairness, transparency, and employee welfare across all its aviation ventures, which is missing at the moment.

Schedule disruptions

Vistara pilots have been on a silent protest since last month over the introduction of a new pay structure that reduced their fixed allowance to 40 hours instead of 70 hours. The non-availability of pilots resulted in schedule disruptions earlier in the week and forced the airline to cut back on flights.

"The pilots of Vistara have been steadfast in their advocacy for fixed 70-hour compensation, improved working conditions, and a stable roster. After thorough assessment and consultation, we firmly believe that their demands are not only reasonable but also reflective of broader challenges prevalent within Tata Group airlines," the Indian Commercial Pilots Association and Indian Pilots Guild said in a joint letter.

"The issues of 70-hour fixed remuneration, approval of leaves and adequate rest periods, an unstable roster, stretching pilots to maximum flight duty, botched roster practices, and an unsupportive work environment are consistently echoed by pilots across different Tata Group airlines," the pilot unions wrote.

They said the pilots need to be respected but are currently being subjected to conditions reminiscent of bonded labourers.

"It is distressing to witness instances where pilots are being exploited, overworked, and deprived of their basic rights across Tata Group airlines," the unions complained.