In a move to pressure the government into negotiation, 11 striking pilots of Air India (AI) on Sunday went on an indefinite hunger strike in the national capital, seeking the reinstatement of 101 sacked pilots and recognition of the Indian Pilots’ Guild (IPG).
Tomorrow, nine more pilots will join this hunger strike as the agitation on the issue of career progression and Boeing 787 training enters 48th day.
While the delivery of Boeing 787 is held up on the issue of compensation, AI’s plan to train its pilots on the aircraft also received a jolt. Two senior pilots have failed the training, airline sources said. The two are among the 64 pilots sent to Singapore for a Boeing 787 training.
Both of them are experienced pilots on Airbus A320 plane flown by pilots of erstwhile Indian Airlines. One of them is an examiner and other is a check pilot whose job requires to train other pilots on fleet. An Air India spokesperson was not available for comment.
AI had sent equal number of pilots from both Air India and erstwhile Indian Airlines for the Boeing 787 training, and is expected to receive seven planes in 2012-13.
Rohit Kapahi of IPG that the government has de-recognised, said the body’s protest is for the reinstatement of sacked colleagues and for the recognition of the union.