Voice from the Rooftop

Blog of Vincent Augustine D'Souza

Cancel Kingfisher Licence

Kingfisher is in trouble again. It has cancelled flights without informing passengers and DGCA and passengers are suffering. DGCA should cancel its licence. Excuse of bird hits should not be accepted. Passengers book their tickets in advance. When they come to the airport and know flights are cancelled there is not much they can do. To get tickets on other airlines they may have to pay more.

Ajit Singh has rightly said there will be no bail out of private airlines. If airlines suffer losses they are responsible for them. Passengers pay the fare fixed by airlines. If on an average airlines lose 900 rupees per seat they should increase the average fare by more than 900 rupees per seat. As a consequence if some people stop airline travel so be it. Air travel is not supposed to be cheap.

Kingfisher has borrowed money from banks and has not paid them. It has deducted taxes but not paid them. Its employees do not receive their salaries for months. Vijay Mallya has money for IPL but not for Kingfisher. A cricketer gets hired for almost 10 crore rupees for 45 days. Pilots don’t get paid. It seems many pilots have left Kingfisher and joined other airlines. Kingfisher has 7,000 crore rupees debt. It would not have been more if government had not bailed him out by turning loans payable to government banks into shares. Vijay Mallya blaming Income Tax Department for freezing accounts is of no use. Pilots were getting notices for taxes deducted by Kingfisher over the years but not paid to the government.

Foreign airlines are expected to be allowed to invest in private airlines in India but no one has come forward. Perhaps they have their own problems. Recently Air Australia went bankrupt. Passengers were stranded in Honolulu and other places.

Air India also should not get bail out. The freebies and concessions its present and former CMDs, directors, pilots and other employees get should be abolished. High salaries should be cut down. Some pilots get almost one crore rupees per year.

Kingfisher is not aviation industry. If it goes down it will not be the end of industry. Over the years East West, Modiluft, Damania Airways and many other airlines have shut down and aviation industry continues.

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  1. the industry is tough and it need tougher people to manage the business. Clearly Kingfisher is not able to sustain it..I too think the tragic end of Kingfisher airlines is near !

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