A consortium of unions representing employees of Air India has announced that it would go on strike from April 2 if salary dues are not paid immediately or if the Aviation Ministry fails to provide a concrete plan towards clearing all pending dues within a stipulated period.
The meeting between officials from the Aviation Ministry and unions representing employees of Air India failed to yield any result in regard to the pending dues and allowances on Thursday.
The deliberations will continue on Friday to find a solution to the agitation by Air India employees demanding all dues towards salaries and allowances be attended to immediately.
Eight major unions which have given the agitation threat, include the Indian Pilots Guild, Air India Officers Association, Air India Engineers Association, Air India Employees Union, Air India Cabin Crew Association, Air India Aircraft Engineers Association, All India Service Engineers Association and Air Corporation Employees Union.
They are demanding intervention from the Prime Minister of India to resolve the crisis, failing which they have threatened to go on a 'no pay no work' strike starting April 2.
Air India is burdened with a humongous debt of Rs 67,000 crore and is relying on the bail out through equity infusion of Rs 4000 crore promised in the budget. The airline suffered deficit of Rs 6900 crore this fiscal and is currently bearing a Rs 10-crore loss everyday.
Aviation Minister Ajit Singh said that the government would stand by its employees like it did at previous occasions.
The present employ strength of Air India stands at 21,500. There is a move to provide voluntary retirement schemes to contain the number of employees. About 7500 employees are expected to retire over the next three years.