Defying order of central government to freeze promotions and fresh appointments as airline's stake sale process is going to begin soon, Air India on Monday promoted seven assistant general managers to Senior Assistant General Managers, according to an official document.
An official "establishment order" passed by the national carrier on Monday stated that the appointments of seven AGMs as Sr AGMs "have been approved subject to applicable service regulations".
The seven AGMs who have been promoted on Monday to Sr AGMs are Satish Kr Meena, M Madhu, Shobha Moorthy, Vikas Gupta, E P D'souza, K Jayaraman and Y J Manuel.
"The above appointments will be effective from the date the incumbents assume charge of their new assignment," the order stated.
PTI has accessed the copy of this "establishment order".
According to sources, earlier this month, the Department of Investment and Public Asset Management (DIPAM) had asked the national carrier to freeze all promotions and fresh appointments as it is planning to start airline's disinvestment process soon.
On the aforementioned matter, Aviation Managers' Association (AMA) - which is a union of around 2000 of Air India's junior and middle level managers - on Tuesday wrote a letter to the national carrier's chief Ashwani Lohani stating they "are disheartened to note the development of favouring the higher cadres of management, ignoring the junior level managers".
The letter, which has also been marked to Civil Aviation Minister Hardeep Singh Puri, "requested" that the airline should "sanction all impending promotions of junior level managers".
"It is surprising that promotions are carried out in a hurried manner for AGM to Sr AGM in personnel department, vide Establishment Order. 118 of 2019 dated July 22, 2019," the AMA's letter said.
"The interview is carried by Video Conference in the morning of July 22, 2019, and the promotion order is released post lunch of July 22, 2019," the letter said about the promotion of aforementioned seven employees of personnel department.
Efforts to sell 76 per cent stake in the national carrier failed to take off in 2018. Then transaction adviser EY (Ernst & Young) in its report had cited the government retaining 24 per cent stake and corresponding rights and high debt as reasons for the failure of the disinvesment process.
On July 3, Civil Aviation Minister Hardeep Singh Puri told the Rajya Sabha that the government is committed to the disinvestment of Air India and the plan is to make it more operationally viable before stake sale.