Talks Fail, Air India Pilots to Continue Agitation

Air India operations remained disrupted for the third consecutive day on Monday with the airline’s management and the striking pilots failing to break the deadlock at the second round of talks.

At least 40 flights were cancelled across the country as some pilots, majority of them Delhi-based, continued to report “sick” to protest the management’s decision to slash Productivity-Linked Incentives (PLI).

The adamant pilots are seeking three months of flying allowance and PLI, which are “due”, saying the amount should be paid in full before they resume their duties even as Air India Chairman and Managing Director Arvind Jadhav held talks with them, second time in as many days.

The two-hour long talks ended in a “stalemate”, said Captain VK Bhalla, the leader of the pilot agitation.

“The management has refused to address our concerns. We will continue our agitation. We expect our pilots across the country to join us soon,” he added.

Media reports later cited Air India spokesman Jitendra Bhargava, who confirmed that the talks remained “inconclusive”.

The focus now shifts to a meeting called by the Civil Aviation ministry on Tuesday to discuss the situation arising out of the Air India pilots’ agitation as well as a similar protest by their counterparts in the Jet Airways earlier this month.

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