Cash-strapped carrier Jet Airways' pilots union has for the first time sought the government's help to recover pending salaries and dues from the airline after their pleas to the management have fallen on "deaf ears."
In a letter to Labour Minister Santosh Gangwar, National Aviators Guild, which represents the majority of Jet's pilots, has asked that the airline immediately pay their outstanding salaries and allowances till date with interest.
"This situation is leading to extreme tension and frustration amongst our members, hardly an ideal situation for pilots in cockpit," captain Karan Arora, president of the union, said in the letter dated March 6, seen by news agency Reuters.
Jet has delayed payments to its pilots, suppliers and lessors for months and defaulted on loans after racking up over $1 billion in debt. The airline is in talks with state-backed banks for a rescue deal and emergency funds.
The pilots in August were given a staggered schedule of payments for salaries but Jet has not kept up, the union said, adding the airline still owes the pilots most of the salary for December, and all of January and February.
Jet did not immediately respond to a request for comment.