Pilots union moves court against restraint order on stir

May 15th, 2012 - 10:08 pm ICT by IANS  

New Delhi, May 15 (IANS) The Indian Pilots Guild (IPG), an association of Air India pilots, Tuesday moved the Delhi High Court challenging its single judge’s order that restrained the pilots of the national carrier from going on an “illegal strike”.

The matter will come up for hearing Wednesday before a division bench of Justice Sanjay Kishan Kaul and Justice Rajiv Shakdher.

Hearing a plea of Air India, Justice Reva Khetrapal had May 9 restrained the over 100 pilots, owing allegiance to the IPG, from continuing the strike, over the rescheduling of Boeing 787 Dreamliner training and matters relating to their career progression.

Restraining the pilots to continue with the strike, the court said the guild, “its members, agents, office bearers are restrained from illegal strike. The pilots are also restrained from reporting sick, demonstrating, holding dharnas, or resorting to any other modes of strike in and outside the petitioner company, including its offices in Delhi and outside, and also around airports”.

“Irreparable injury will be caused to petitioner (Air India) if such strike will be allowed to continue,” the court had said.

Air India pilots claimed they were more experienced than the pilots of the erstwhile Indian Airlines and should, therefore, be preferred for the training programme.

The pilot’s move has come at a critical juncture for the airline which is hoping to retrieve lost ground with the peak vacation season and having secured a whopping Rs.42,000 crore bailout package.

Air India booked 27 Boeing 787s in 2006 in a mega deal for 68 aircraft from Boeing. The first of the 27 aircraft, ordered in 2006 for the IPG cadre pilots before the merger of Air India and the Indian Airlines in 2007, are expected to join the fleet at the end of the month.

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