NDTV Profit

Kingfisher employees may move court with winding-up petition


Kingfisher Airlines employees today threatened the management to pay all their pending dues or they would go to court with a winding-up petition, sources told NDTV Profit.

The employees also sought a status update on the renewal of the airline's licence, which expired on December 31 after the airline failed to convince the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) about its turnaround plan.

The licence was suspended on October 20 after a strike by the airline's pilots and engineers in September-end over non-payment of salaries for several months, grounding the airline's entire fleet.

According to government sources, a request to extend the licence will not be granted unless the suspended carrier can come up with a revival plan. This will effectively remove one scheduled carrier from Indian skies, at least for now.

Kingfisher has two years from now to get its license renewed, but it has to convince banks, airports, tax authorities and its staff about its viability, the source, who has direct knowledge of the matter, said.

Kingfisher, which has not flown since October, owes money to all of them.

The DGCA has already stated it will hold talks with Kingfisher's creditors and airport operators before deciding on its application seeking permission to re-launch its services.

Last month, Diageo Plc bought a majority stake in United Spirits, also a UB Group company, for $2.1 billion. UB did not specify if part of that money would be injected into Kingfisher.

The airline, owned by liquor tycoon Vijay Mallya, has been trying unsuccessfully to raise fresh cash for more than a year.

With inputs from agencies

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