Sunday, October 22, 2006

Air-India, Indian merger: boon or bane?

New Delhi: In the face of the tough stand taken by the civil aviation minister, Mr Praful Patel, employees of the two national carriers ~ Air India and Indian ~ have expressed apprehension over the merger proposal, stating that it may “prove to be the last nail in our coffin”.
Stating that the merger, resulting in the Air-India and Indian becoming a single entity, would be in place by the end of this fiscal, the minister took pains to assure that not a single retrenchment was contemplated. “It is in the long-term interest of both the carriers,” he said, adding that questions of seniority would find their way to be overcome.
However, the employees think otherwise. “On paper the blueprint of such a merged entity looks brilliant but, on the ground, whether it becomes a bane or boon for the workforce is a question that needs to be answered by the government,” the Air Corporation Employee’s Union (ACEU) has stated. “We strongly feel that it would tend to add to our woes because on the ground we will be the worst sufferers and far from bringing fortune it may prove to be the last nail in our coffin.”
21/10/06 Asha Ramachandran/The Statesman
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