Troubles mount for Indian airlines, even in good times

Sep 27, 2023

By: Katya Naidu

Go, Going, Gone

Indian airlines managed to recover from their COVID-19 dip, with good traffic growth in the last few quarters. Yet, troubles are mounting at Akasa Air, SpiceJet and GoFirst, proving that aviation is a tough business to be in.

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Pilots eject

As many as 40 pilots quit the one-year old airline without serving their six month to a year notice period. It had to cancel over 600 flights, and is also in the process of raising $400 million, as per media reports.

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GoFirst remains grounded

The Wadias-owned airline had gotten into engine trouble, and filed for bankruptcy. It received a nod to resume operations in July but is yet to get off the ground.

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Spice jet's financial worries

Financial troubles are mounting at SpiceJet. One of its creditors, Credit Suisse, has dragged it to the Supreme Court over non-payment of dues. It has also delayed crediting TDS of its employees. Its promoter Ajay Singh, however, has given it a ₹500 crore lifeline.

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Jet is still in nosedive mode

Once India’s top airline, Jet Airways too emerged victorious from its bankruptcy after it was sold last year. It also received a nod to fly again but has been unable to get itself off the runway.

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Airlines in limbo

It’s not the first time that Indian airlines have flown into turbulent times. Many airlines, promoted by billionaires, went bankrupt earlier too, spelling trouble for the company and employees alike.

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Good times in air

One of the biggest falls in Indian aviation history was that of Kingfisher Airlines, owned then by Vijay Mallya. Mallya, subsequently, had to exit the country after the loans taken for the grounded airline mounted.

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Acquiring troubles

Jet Airways’ problems were compounded by the acquisition of Subroto Roy’s Sahara Airlines. Same was the case with Kingfisher Airlines that had acquired low-cost carrier Air Deccan.

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Paramount’s legal troubles

The Madurai-headquartered regional airline operated between South Indian destinations from 2005 to 2010. This was until a legal dispute between the airlines and its aircraft lessors arose.

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Damania Airlines

The airline started by Parvez and Vispi Damania operated between 1993 to 1997. Its fortunes were altered after the government changed its regulations for private airlines.

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