New Delhi: The rift between the Air India staff and the government has worsened with the government now accusing the employees of causing massive financial losses. Civil Aviation Minister Ajit Singh told Parliament on Thursday that the Vigilance Department was investigating 161 cases of irregularities. The ministry accepted that there has been an increase in tipsy pilots and cabin crew.
It also says that the pilots allegedly pocketted over Rs 2 crore in inflated flying allowance and productivity-linked incentives.
This came even as the airline has been struggling with a strike that has cost it Rs 10 crore per day.
The Ministry said that the government was also investigating financial irregularities in foreign allowance, hotel accommodation, transportation and visa fees by the cabin and cockpit crew. Money was allegedly wasted in five-star hotels.
Meanwile, three pilots who broke ranks with their colleagues are set to resume work as the pilots' strike entered its 10th day. No flight cancellations were reported so far on Thursday.
Aviation Minister Ajit Singh has said that he would call a meeting of all the unions of Air India next week to discuss the issues of promotions and career progression.
These will be the representatives of all the recognised unions, which means the Indian Pilots Guild, that is spearheading the pilots' strike will not be a part of it.
The Delhi High Court is also expected to give its verdict on the Guild's plea challenging an order that restrains them from going on an illegal strike.