Paramount likely to resume services today

Written by fe Bureau | Chennai | Updated: Dec 7 2009, 07:13am hrs
Chennai-based business class airline Paramount Airways hopes that its operations will become normal from Monday with resumption of services on full scale.

The company hopes that DGCA (directorate general of civil aviation) which asked concerned authorities to de-register three of its five aircraft on Friday, would revoke its order following a favourable verdict received from the London High Court in a long dispute with GECAS (GE Commercial Aviation Servicesan aircraft leaser based in Europe), over lease rental.

The airline has sent all relevant documents pertaining to the court verdict to the DGCA and hopes that the latter will reverse its earlier de-register order on Monday, an official of the airline said on Sunday.

Paramount Airways said it had been awarded a positive judgment by the London High Court against GECAS over the pending dispute on maintenance reserves and deposit refund, thus putting an end to months of speculation.

Paramount Airways has made a $15 million deposit to Gecas$5 million as deposit and $10 million as maintenance reserves. The dispute had arisen as Paramount asked for a reimbursement of the maintenance reserves created on various checks carried out. Lack of response from GECAS led to the dispute. GECAS in its capacity of a leasing company was looking to deregister the aircraft due to the dispute.

In its order, the London High Court said: The defendant is permitted to remain in possession of the aircraft and use them for all purposes permitted under the lease agreements. Following which, Paramount has submitted the relevant court documents to DGCA and expects all operations to continue normally by Monday.

When contacted, an official of the airline said, the company has not been flying to destinations such as Delhi, Kochi and Ahmedabad for the last three months owing to dispute. Following the Court verdict we expect to resume services to these destinations once we get approval from DGCA. Being a market leader with 27% share in the southern region, Paramount with its five Embrarer aircraft, flies to 16 destinations across the country with 60 services a day and carries 3,000 people on an average daily, the official said. The company is looking at acquiring new aircraft on its own in due course of time, he added.