India National News

Vistara Grapples With Flight Cancellations, Pilot Standoff Amid Air India Merger

Air Vistara CEO Vinod Kannan, all management, the HR and all pilots to meet at 1pm on the standoff over merger with Air India. On Tuesday, the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) told Vistara, which is facing a crisis, to give them daily updates on flight cancellations and delays. They also asked Vistara to make sure passengers get all the necessary assistance, including refunds and compensation.

This comes after Vistara cancelled more than 60 flights on Tuesday and nearly 50 on Monday. Vistara normally operates more than 350 flights daily, both within India and internationally.

Also Watch: Facing A Delay Or Cancelled Vistara Flight? Here’s Why | Vistara Crisis Explained

On Tuesday, Vistara cancelled 14 departing flights and 17 arriving flights from calone. Flights from Mumbai to Paris and Male on international routes were also cancelled.

Passengers who had connecting international flights from Delhi and Mumbai faced the most difficulties. In Kolkata, one flight was cancelled, and there were multiple delays.

The delay comes after many pilots are reportedly protesting against the terms of a new contract after the airline decided to merge with Air India.

According to reports, Vistara pilots have requested sick leave together, which seems to be a response to the airline’s introduction of a new pay structure ahead of its merger with Air India.

Unlike airlines like IndiGo, where sick leave can be taken throughout the year, Vistara pilots must use their sick leave entitlements by the end of March.

With the new contract starting in April, Vistara pilots will receive a fixed salary for 40 hours instead of the previous 70 hours. This change is in line with a standardized salary structure across Tata group airlines. Many first officers are concerned that this adjustment will negatively affect their earnings.

Pilots also worry about the potential impact on their seniority, which is crucial for career advancement after the merger. Seniority determines how long a pilot has worked for a specific airline.

When pilots switch airlines, their seniority starts over regardless of their flying experience. Factors like preferred base, aircraft assignment, and progression from narrow-body to wide-body aircraft depend on seniority rankings.

According to reports, the airline’s management warned pilots that if they didn’t accept the new contract by the end of the day, they would lose out on a one-time payout and indicate a lack of interest in joining Air India after the merger.

In response to the worsening situation, the airline, which is jointly owned by Tata Group and Singapore Airlines, released a statement on Monday acknowledging the flight cancellations and delays that have occurred in recent days.

Vistara is in the midst of merging with Air India after its privatization, with Singapore Airlines acquiring a 25.1% stake in the previously state-owned carrier.


Dear Readers,
As an independent media platform, we do not take advertisements from governments and corporate houses. It is you, our readers, who have supported us on our journey to do honest and unbiased journalism. Please contribute, so that we can continue to do the same in future.

Related posts