24-Feb-2011 10:46 AM

Air India pilots threaten strike

Indian Commercial Pilots Association (ICPA), which represents around 800 pilots of the erstwhile Indian Airlines, served a 14-day notice to Air India on 23-Feb-2011, outlining a planned strike action on 09-Mar-2011 (PTI/Hindu Business Line/IANS/Hindustan Times, 23-Feb-2011). Air India has sought the "immediate intervention" of the Chief Labour Commissioner to avert the strike. The pilots' body said they were "compelled to issue the strike notice on account of the actions of the incompetent and dishonest handling of industrial relations by the higher echelons of the management". The union stated the carrier has "failed" to address their grievances, including pay parity and better working conditions. The union has also protested the "withdrawal" of flights from profitable routes "to benefit private airlines". ICPA also alleged "racial discrimination in their own country perpetrated by the national carrier", indicating the differences in pays and conditions offered to the expatriate pilots at Air India. ICPA is also demanding payment of arrears since "at least the date of merger" of the two airlines in 2007. 

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