New Delhi: In order to resolve its deepening debt crisis, the Kingfisher Airlines might lay off 50 percent of its current employees, sources claimed on Monday.
As per the sources, Kingfisher is expected to make an official announcement regarding its decision to slash 50 percent of its current workforce later in the evening.
Earlier this morning, Civil Aviation Minister Ajit Singh issued a warning to the owner of the debt-ridden airlines, Vijay Mallya, to pay the airline’s dues in order to continue its operations.
The warning came just hours before the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) is to submit a crucial report on the cash-strapped private carrier.
Speaking to a news channel, Singh said that the aviation watchdog will call Mallya again to ensure that safety and passenger convenience is not being compromised.
He said as long as the airline adheres to its schedules and flying norms, it can continue to fly.
Singh said, “As far as rules are concerned, if any airline has five planes and the required amount of equity then it can continue to fly. However, if Kingfisher keeps changing its schedule without informing the DGCA or the passengers, does not pay the oil companies or the Airport Authority of India, the airline might not continue operations.”
On Sunday, the cash-strapped airline had agreed to pay only up to Rs 10 crore of its Rs 76-crore service tax dues this fiscal, a top government official said.
S K Goel , the CBEC Chairman said that as per their talks, the Vijay Mallya-promoted airline will pay only Rs 5 to 10 crore of its dues before the end of the fiscal but the private carrier should not worry about any immediate penal action.
He said the Service Tax department has been freezing Kingfisher's bank accounts since October due to the non-payment. As of now it has frozen as many as 40 accounts.
With PTI inputs
First Published: Monday, March 26, 2012, 13:05