The non-payment of dues to oil companies has been due to “overall lack of adequate funds,” Air India chairman and managing director Ashwani Lohani had said in a statement earlier.
Struggling with the inability to pay for fuel bills, cash-strapped national carrier Air India on Sunday said that the issues with the fuel retailers over fuel payment would be resolved soon. An Air India spokesperson said that issues with oil companies are being sorted out and would be resolved early, CNBC-TV18 tweeted. The airline has “taken measures to ensure” that there is no disruption in flights and inconvenience to passengers. The spokesperson added that there is no reason for any concern by passengers.
PSU oil majors including Indian Oil Corporation, Bharat Petroleum, and Hindustan Petroleum on Thursday had written a letter to Air India for making the monthly lump sum payment by October 18, as reported by PTI, to avoid stoppage of fuel supply at six major airports including Mohali, Patna, Kochi, Vizag, Pune, and Ranchi.
The non-payment of dues to oil companies has been due to “overall lack of adequate funds,” Air India chairman and managing director Ashwani Lohani had said in a statement in August claiming that it doesn’t reflect on the operational performance and recent efforts of the airline in any way.
In August, the oil companies had snapped fuel supply at six airports “in the wake of long-overdue payments to the tune of Rs 5,000 crore,” an IOC statement had said on behalf of the three firms. However, the supply was restored after one-day post-intervention by the aviation ministry while the airline had committed to making payment of Rs 100 crore per month apart from the same day payment for the daily uplift of the fuel, PTI had reported. Air India reportedly uplifts around 250 kilolitres of jet fuel at the six airports on a daily basis but after fuel cut, it was tanking up its flights (operating from the six airports) from other airports.