BJP asks Govt to bail out a sick Kingfisher Airlines

      The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) on Friday asked the Congress-led UPA Government and in particular the Civil Aviation Ministry to ensure that the ailing Kingfisher Airlines is back on track and that the safety and well being of the employees are taken care of on a priority basis. BJP spokesperson Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi said it is extremely unfortunate that incidents of harassment are taking place with the employees of private airlines and even reports of suicide are coming forward.

"It is a fact that the airlines which are running into losses at the moment did not provide any package to its employees when they were making huge profits. And these airlines are such that they have many more businesses apart from this," he added. Naqvi further said that it is extremely immoral and illegal to stop the salaries of employees. "It is a matter of great sorrow that the Central Government and the Civil Aviation Ministry are silent on the whole episode. The concerned authorities should take some serious steps and the safety and well being of the employees should be looked after on priority basis," he added.

Civil Aviation Minister Ajit Singh earlier in the day expressed doubts whether the carrier, facing a partial lockout, will resume its operations soon. Singh said the airline should be in a position to get its planes certified and satisfy the DGCA that the schedule that they have given is maintained. Kingfisher Airlines has extended its partial lockout up to October 12, as talks between its management and employees failed to break the deadlock over non-payment of salaries for the last seven months. The partial lockout commenced on Monday evening. Concerned over the worsening crisis, Kingfisher's lenders held an emergency meeting in Mumbai last evening to discuss the evolving situation.

The beleaguered airline, meanwhile, got some reprieve as bankers agreed to release funds from escrow accounts, which is likely to release up to 60 crore rupees for the carrier. In an apparent fallout of the worsening crisis in Kingfisher Airlines, the wife of one of its Delhi-based employees allegedly committing suicide, blaming financial stress due to non-payment of salary to her husband for five months. Susmita Chakarvarti, the wife of Manas Chakarvarti who is a ground staff in Kingfisher Airlines, was found hanging from the ceiling in her DDA flat in south-west Delhi 's Manglapuri at around 1:30 PM. Sushmita, 45, was rushed to a nearby hospital where she was declared brought dead. A suicide note purportedly written by her was recovered from the spot in which she spoke of being under financial stress due to non-payment of salary to her husband.

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