Jet Airways crisis: Employees meet Finance Minister Arun Jaitley

Forum Gandhi Mumbai | Updated on April 20, 2019

Arun Jaitley, Finance Minister. File photo   -  The Hindu

A letter was given to Jaitley which stated that the airline is "a job provider with 16,000 regular employees and 6,000 contract employees"

The employees’ representatives, Chief Executive Officer (CEO) and Chief Financial Officer (CFO) of Jet Airways met Finance Minister Arun Jaitley to seek government intervention.

"The meeting with the Finance Minister was positive," said a pilot representative of Jet Airways after meeting Jaitley in Delhi.

The pilot representative added that during the meeting that lasted for one hour and 20 minutes , Jaitley said that Jet Airways is important, and that he cares about the airline, its employees and customers. His priority is to ensure that the passengers do not suffer.

Earlier this week, Vinay Dube, the CEO of Jet Airways had in a letter said that a plea to release interim funding of Rs 983 crore was not accepted hence, the airline was forced to temporarily shut operations.

Read: Job offers, help pour in for Jet Airways employees

"We also requested him to ask the banks to, at least, release one month's salaries of the employees so that they do not quit the company, and remain confident that the company is going to stay afloat. He said that he will request the State Bank of India (SBI) chief to look into the matter," a pilot body representative added.

SBI is the lead lender to Jet Airways, while the airline has a gross debt of approximately Rs 8,500 crore, the state-run bank is carrying forward the bidding process for the airline to keep it afloat. The results of the bid process are expected on May 10 after which a new investor will take over the airline's pilot seat. "We requested himescalate the bid process, ensure our slots remain with us, and that they don't take away our aircraft," the pilot added.

Also read: Jet Airways crisis: Lenders explore ways to utilise 15 Jet planes, protect valuable assets

A letter was given to Jaitley which stated that the airline is "a job provider with 16,000 regular employees and 6,000 contract employees." The letter also highlighted the hardships that the management was facing to pay salaries to the employees and the issues that employees were facing due to the same. For the past one week, several employee unions of Jet Airways have been protesting in Mumbai and Delhi. "Some employees haven't received salaries for two months and others haven't received salaries for four months. He acknowledged it and said that he will look into the matter,” said an Engineers representative on behalf of Jet Airways.

The letter further stated that the company has contributed to Rs 60,000 crore in state and federal taxes in full honesty and promptly. Urging the Finance Minister to look into the matter, it further stated, "We request you to consider the situation with utmost urgency it deserves by expediting the process of emergency funding, as every minute and every decision by your kind self is critical in these times for our and our family's survivability."

Published on April 20, 2019

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