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Dharmadhikari panel submits report on AI merger

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Almost five years after the merger of two state-run airlines, a report on integration of about 29,000 employees of unified Air India, including pilots, cabin crew and engineers, was submitted to the Civil today.

Former Supreme Court judge, Justice DM Dharmadhikari, who headed a four-member committee, submitted the report to Civil Aviation Minister Ajit Singh here.

"They have submitted the report today. We will examine it," Singh told PTI.

Asked whether there was any timeline for its implementation, the minister said, "They have just submitted the report. It is a very complicated issue. They have deliberated over the last six months on this. It's more than 100 pages and there are so many people involved in it - the pilots, the other people in the airline management. The Ministry will examine the report and then do whatever that needs to be done."

Though details of the report were not available immediately, the Dharmadhikari Committee is understood to have made several recommendations on critical issues like career progression, integration across various cadre, rationalisation of their pay scale, allowances and incentives and overall restructuring of the entire staff of the erstwhile Indian Airlines and Air India.

As on December 31, last year, the total staff strength of the carrier, which was merged in March 2007, stood at 28,500.

Besides Justice Dharmadhikari, the Committee had Prof Ravindra H Dholakia of IIM Ahmedabad, Rajeshwar Dayal, expert on public sector employees' service matters and senior Civil Aviation Ministry official Syed Nasir Ali, as its members.

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