Air India Strike Reaches Day Seven
Wednesday, 4th May 2011 at 12:14pm
With no obvious sign of an agreement on the horizon, the Air India pilots strike reaches day seven.
The Indian government has planned to use retired Indian Airlines pilots to operate domestic routes " the sector which has suffered the most.
The retirement age for Air India pilots is 58, but the rules according to the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) allow commercial flying till the age of 65.
At this stage, over 90% of domestic operations have been affected, with only 40 flights operating of the total 165 domestic flights. The airline is likely to decide by Wednesday if it should continue to suspend bookings.
Air India has decided to withhold salary payments of the striking pilots until they resume work. This is a further sign of a deadlock between the striking pilots and the management.
The aviation minister, Vayalar Ravi, is reported to have decided that only one of the four demands of the striking Indian Commercial Pilots' Association (ICPA) could be considered.
The pilots have reiterated their demands for calling off the strike - re-recognition of ICPA by the management; reinstatement of all sacked and suspended pilots; probe into the alleged misdeeds by top management and time-bound resolution of the parity between AI and IA pilots.
By: Pete Lee.