Four staff unions of state-owned domestic airline Indian have formed a ‘joint action committee’ to negotiate with the management and the government on issues related to salaries, seniority and transfers after its merger with Air India,.
The decision was taken following a meeting they had with Union civil aviation minister Praful Patel and Indian chairman, Vishwapati Trivedi.
At the meeting, representatives of Air Corporations Employees Union, Indian Commercial Pilots’ Association, All India Aircraft Engineers Association (AIAEA) and Indian Aircraft Technical Association, which together account for almost all of the nearly 19,000 workers with Indian, were told by the minister that their concerns would be addressed.
Workers are seeking a parity in wages with Air India employees (who are paid an average 15% more), payment of arrears pending since 1997 and training for the new aircraft being bought. They also want seniority maintained when the domestic airline merges into the bigger Air India.
The unions are demanding that these issues be addressed before the merger process formally kicks off in 16 weeks.
Patel told the unions that Accenture, a consultant engaged to advise on the merger, will make a presentation to explain to them the way the merger will proceed, Y.V. Raju, general secretary of the 700-strong AIAEA, said.