Air India Pilot may resort to strike amid privatization news
Opposing privatization of Air India, Indian Commercial Pilots' Association has threatened to go on strike unless their long pending demands related to salaries are addressed.
The nearly 800-member strong Indian Commerc ial Pilots' Association (ICPA), whose members fly narrow-body planes, has decided to work towards bringing all the unions at the airline under a common platform to oppose privatization of the airline.
Earlier reported in People Matters, the airline is preparing for it disinvestment in three of its entities—Air India Ltd., Air India Express Ltd. and Air India SATS Airport Services Pvt. Ltd. (AISATS). Air India has also invited bids from law firms to assess labor issues, possible liabilities arising out of litigation and group companies’ contracts with various business partners.
The government is working on the final contours of disinvestment of loss-making Air India, which has a debt worth over Rs 58,000 crore.
"It has been unanimously decided to strongly oppose privatisation of the national carrier Air India by all means, including Industrial Action, if required," as per minutes of an emergency meeting of the ICPA held on November 1.
A member of the union said there are plans to go on strike in case the issues related to salaries are not resolved.
Air India has been preparing for disinvestment for some months now. In fact, many jobs and employees have also been impacted during this period of time. In July, Air India had to put a freeze on large-scale promotion and appointments.
While the officials work on giving final shape to the document inviting expressions of interest from investors for the stake sale, the future of 10,000 permanent employees of Air India is shrouded with uncertainty.