Air India aircraft maintenance engineers write to PM Modi, suggest ways to cut costs

Joining pilots in their fight against discriminatory pay cuts, Air India (AI) aircraft maintenance engineers (AME) on Wednesday wrote to Prime Minister Narendra Modi requesting him to urge the aviation ministry to revisit the salary issue.

The letter, written by the Joint Forum Of Air India, suggested ways for the airlines to cut costs by replacing the re-hired retired employees (who are paid high salaries), with freshers. This the letter claimed, would help AI save around ₹30 crore-₹40 crore.

Another suggestion was to ask all Indian registered airlines to repair 25% of their aircraft with Air India Engineering Services Limited (AIESL), which according to the AMEs, would create additional revenue upward of ₹800 crore for the company.

Requesting Modi to revoke their salary cuts, the letter read, “This is the right opportunity to take corrective actions, including an overhaul of the top management, to eradicate the miss-management and previous wrong policy decisions.” The Air India spokesperson refused to comment on the matter.

Meanwhile, a serving senior Air India pilot wrote an open letter to civil aviation minister Hardeep Singh Puri, highlighting the fact that many AI pilots got infected with the virus while operating flights under the government’s Vande Bharat Mission. It pointed out that many pilots had unknowingly spread the infection to their family members, in some cases resulting in loss of life.

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