New Delhi: Adding twist to the Kingfisher Airlines crisis, sources said that the airline will not be able to pay the full salaries to its employees. The current monthly salary outgo for Kingfisher Airlines stands at approximately Rs 20 crore. Half of the airline staff were paid their March salaries but for the outstanding salaries, the airline will need Rs 10 crore.
The balance amount for seven months is Rs 120 crore and the management wants to pay only March dues and maybe for April which will take the total for two months to Rs 30 crore. On Thursday, banks finally agreed to release Rs 60 crores to the cash-trapped airline after an emergency meeting on Thursday in Mumbai at the SBI Bhawan.
For the moment, the airline is on a lock-down mode, and will not be operating flights till October 12.
Countrywide protests were staged by the airline employees after CEO Sanjay Agarwal cancelled a meeting with them on Friday. The meetings between Agarwal and the employees in Bangalore and Chennai was cancelled with sources saying that some of the employees refused to meet the management. A group of employees took out a march from Mumbai airport to Kingfisher House on Friday morning while employees in Delhi plan to hold a candlelight vigil later in day.
On Thursday the airline management held a meeting with a group of employees in Gurgaon to resolve the crisis but failed to break the deadlock. There was more confusion after the meeting as a Kingfisher Airlines official claimed that 100 employees were ready to resume work, but the airlines denied any such development.
Kingfisher Airlines, once India's second-largest airline, is half a year behind on salary payments and has grounded its fleet since Monday. Over 80 pilots and 270 Kingfisher engineers have been on intermittent strikes over the past few months, primarily over delay in payment of salaries.
Kingfisher has been saddled with a huge loss of Rs 8,000 crore and a debt burden of over Rs 7,000 crore, a large part of which it has not serviced since January. Several of its aircraft have been either taken away by its lessors or grounded by the Airports Authority of India for non-payment of dues during the past few months.
Kingfisher's net loss in 2010-11 was Rs 1,027 crore and it doubled to Rs 2,328 crore in 2011-2012. The airline also owes money to 17 banks.