Cash-strapped Jet Airways Tuesday paid the balance amount of August salary to its senior management, pilots and engineers. The Naresh Goyal-promoted full-service carrier was scheduled to clear the remaining 50 per cent of the August salary to these personnel on September 26 as part of a staggered-payment plan. Jet Airways, however, could pay only half of the amount on the scheduled date due to the paucity of cash and deferred the payment of the remaining amount to October 9.
“We have received the remaining 25 per cent of our salary on Tuesday and with this payment, the airline has cleared our August salary dues. But it has still to disburse the September salary,” a Jet Airways pilot associated with the National Aviator’s Guild (NAG) told PTI. Notably, the airline management had on October 5 assured its domestic pilots body, NAG, of disbursing the remaining amount of August salary by Tuesday.
The airline, which is struggling to raise capital for its various payment obligations, including payment of salaries to its 16,000 employees, received a breather from its loyalty programme Jet Privilege Private (JPPL), its joint venture with Etihad, which offered it about Rs 258 crore for the advance purchase of discounted tickets. JPPL is 50.1 per cent owned by Etihad Airways, while the rest 49.9 per cent is with Jet Airways.
On September 6, the airline had informed that its senior management, pilots and engineers will receive their monthly salaries in two instalments till November. The August salary was to be paid in two instalments -half by September 11 and the other half by September 26.
Jet Airways response
In response to FE query a Jet Airways spokesperson said, “Jet is committed to overcome the exogenous circumstances that are plaguing the aviation sector due to the continuing increase in the price of Brent fuel as well as the depreciating rupee. We stand committed to our 16000 employees as well as stakeholders with whom we continue to work closely.
While the Company has been diligent in running its payroll as per schedule for all employees, it is only in the last couple of months that the schedule has been impacted due to unavoidable reasons. Despite these challenges, the Company has ensured that 85% of its employees are paid salaries on time while those of the leadership, pilots and engineers have been delayed. However, the airline remains committed to honour its obligations.”