Kingfisher Airlines staff spurn salary offer
By ENS Economic Bureau - BANGALORE
23rd October 2012 10:27 AM
Paying for their earlier mistakes of breaking promises on clearing salary dues to employees of beleaguered air carrier Kingfisher Airlines (KfA), striking staff on Monday rejected the three-month salary installment offer from the company.
The meeting, held in Mumbai, stood inconclusive, even though KfA CEO Sanjay Aggarwal termed it as ‘fruitful’. The company is said to have offered to pay 3 months salary to staff before Diwali; the first one in 24 hours, the second in a week and the 3rd month’s salary before Diwali. Anxious employees, however, rejected the offer demanding a minimum of 4 months salary in a day or two as they had been ‘lied’ to in the past as well. Many employees also stated that they had been given many verbal assurances in the past, but said that they would not consider any offer unless it was documented.
Employees who spoke to the media said that they would not like to negotiate with anyone other than their Chairman Vijay Mallya over the issue and demanded that he be present physically to resolve the crisis. The meeting comes three days after aviation regulator Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) suspended the flying licence of KfA due to their salary issues and subsequent turmoil.
“We are committed to bringing back KfA on track,” an under pressure Aggarwal told media. Terming their 3 months’ salary payment as a ‘fair offer’, he said it was now up to the striking staff to consult their other colleagues before presenting a decision to the management.
“We will know the logistics, but the intention is everyone should be back at work in a day or two,” he said and added that they expected their employees to be at work by October 26.
He also informed media that the meeting had 8 representatives from the staff including engineers, pilots and other staff. On when the remainder of arrears would be cleared, he said, “after the three salaries are paid, then we would give a regular salary every month. We are committed to clearing arrears once we have recapitalised.”
Pilots told Express that they were willing to scale down their actual demand of 7 months salary dues only if KfA management also scale up their offer.
“We are unsure of the developments as none of this has been communicated to us officially,” a pilot from KfA told Express. He said that they were under pressure as other airlines had already submitted their winter schedule to DGCA and that all hope would be lost, if the employees did not return to work as it faced a permanent shut down.
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