Home / News / India /  Jet slot allotment issue to be resolved soon, NCLT told

The issue of allocation of airport slots to Jet Airways (India) Ltd could be resolved in the coming weeks with counsels for the winning bidders of the airline, the civil aviation ministry and the directorate general of civil aviation (DGCA), hoping for an amicable resolution of the issue after a series of meetings, the Mumbai bench of the National Company Law Tribunal (NCLT) was informed on Monday.

The two-judge bench comprising Justices Janab Mohammed Ajmal and V. Nallasenapathy will hear the case next on 15 April.

In the previous hearing on 24 March, lawyers representing UAE-based businessman Murari Lal Jalan and UK-based Kalrock Capital, the winning consortium for Jet Airways, sought the NCLT’s permission to enter into talks with the aviation regulator on restoring airport slots of Jet Airways. At the time, the civil aviation ministry and DGCA sought time from the NCLT to deal with an affidavit filed by the Jalan-Kalrock consortium on airport slot allotments.

The winning bid of the Jalan-Kalrock consortium for Jet Airways is currently before the bankruptcy court for approval.

On Monday, the NCLT was informed that the ministry and the DGCA are still to file their own affidavit so far, which the court had previously asked them to do, with a view that further meetings between the respective counsels will resolve the issue of slots.

The NCLT was also informed that the ministry and DGCA have collectively appointed a nodal officer to address the issue of slots with the winning consortium, with both sides optimistic of a resolution in the coming weeks.

Last October, a committee of creditors (CoC) of Jet Airways had approved the revival plan for the airline submitted by the winning bidders. The consortium has proposed to invest 600 crore in the first two years in Jet Airways to repay creditors and pick up an 89.79% stake in the carrier.

Landing and take-off slots of Jet Airways, which have been redistributed to other airlines, including at the country’s busiest airports such as New Delhi and Mumbai, are highly in demand. Having these slots allows a scheduled airline to carry out landings and departures at an airport during a specific time period.

The DGCA and the aviation ministry had earlier in March informed the NCLT that the consortium will have to apply afresh for airport slots that were taken away from Jet Airways when the carrier stopped operations in April 2019 amid a severe cash crunch.

Lawyers representing the DGCA and the ministry had at the time said that no slots were immediately available, but an application submitted by the consortium would be considered.

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