Monday, August 17, 2020

Turbulent times for pilots as pay slashed by 70%

Chennai: Air India Express and Air India pilots continue to get a raw deal though they remain at the forefront of the airlines’ efforts to rescue stranded Indians.

Air India Express pilots have got their first salaries on Tuesday after heavy pay cuts were announced by the company.

Co-pilots got Rs 37,000 to Rs 50,000 in hand while captains got Rs 1 lakh to Rs 1.5 lakh after deductions. Pilots feel that drastic pay cuts, which is to the tune of 70%, are unfair as it has wiped out most of their allowances which formed a huge part of income. Co-pilots used to earn up to Rs 2 lakh and captains used to earn up to Rs 4 lakh a month.

A pilot said the cuts are not uniform across the board. “While pay cut was to the tune of five per cent to 10% for all employees, pilots lose more because allowances form more than 50% of their salary. The pilots have met the minister but to no effect,” he said.

“Some pilots have monthly expenses which they have to meet through the allowances. In fact, some of the younger co-pilots are stuck that they had to borrow money from captains,” he said.
Though Air India and Air India Express come under the same management and has a common chairman and managing director, the policies adopted to cut cost seems to be different. Sixty-one pilots, including some who flew to Wuhan at the height of Covid crisis-19 in China, have been retired after they completed 58 years.
17/08/20 V Ayyappan/Times of India
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