Wednesday, November 17, 2021

Centre to give medical benefits to retired Air India staff: Scindia replies to Shiv Sena's Priyanka Chaturvedi

New Delhi: In a major respite to thousands of retired staff of Air India, the government carrier which was acquired by the Tata group last month, civil aviation minister Jyotiraditya Scindia has said modalities were being worked out to provide medical facilities to them.

Scindia’s assurance came in response to a letter written by Shiv Sena Rajya Sabha MP Priyanka Chaturvedi. “Please refer to your letter dated 20 October, 2021 regarding providing medical facilities to the retired employees of Air India Limited. I have had the matter examined,” he said in his letter dated November 12.

The minister further wrote: “I would like to inform you that the government is fully aware and committed to providing medical facilities to the retired employees of Air India. Modalities for the same are being worked out in consultation with the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare.”

Earlier, Priyanka Chaturvedi wrote to Scindia and said: “I am writing this letter to bring to your attention a matter of concern. It was brought to my notice that many retired employees of Air India are not covered by any Mediclaim insurance. Pilots, engineers, cabin crew, catering staff, ground handling staff, administrative staff, medical staff, commercial and other departmental staff who have devoted years of their lives to Air India are now left without any concrete medical support.”

She said a meagre amount of annuity was entitled to these retired employees once in three months from Life Insurance Corporation (LIC) and their problems were further aggravated by the fact that either there did not exist a feasible mediclaim cover for the person for more than 60 years or it became difficult to claim one again due to the age factor.

The Shiv Sena leader said, “It saddens me to know that the retired employees do not have insurance benefits. With the divestment of Air India, this issue becomes more acute. I hope that you will look into this matter and relieve these hard-working retired employees of their struggles.”

In a prompt response, Scindia assured her that the civil aviation ministry was committed to providing medical facilities to the retired Air India staff and it was working out modalities with the health and family welfare ministry for the same.

16/11/21 Kumar Shakti Shekhar/Times of India

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