Reinstated Jet employees delighted, thank airline chief

October 17th, 2008 - 7:09 pm ICT by IANS  

Mumbai, Oct 17 (IANS) The lipstick and poise added extra sheen to their incandescent smiles as they headed for work Friday in their canary yellow and navy blue uniforms. “This is unbelievable,” said a joyful Jet Airways flight attendant Reshma Rai (name changed), one of the 1,900 employees who was reinstated after being served a termination letter by the airline.

Added Kanika Bose, another flight attendant: “We would like to thank Mr. Goyal and whatever step he took was in favour of the crew,” referring to Jet chairman Naresh Goyal’s decision to reinstate employees fired earlier in the week.

Bose, 18, said she quit her studies to join the airline industry as her family needed the money. “When I got the job, I had to take a loan to make the Rs.55,000 deposit that the airline asked for. Now I can at least start repaying all the loans,” she said.

Like Bose, Sharad Rao, an air steward, too had taken a loan to take a hotel management and catering course at one of the premier colleges in Mumbai. “I am so happy. I have got my job back,” beamed a relieved Rao.

Goyal decided to take back all sacked employees Thursday night. “I request all of you to start work from tomorrow morning. We will stand by all our employees,” he said after a massive outcry by the sacked employees in Mumbai, Delhi and Chennai.

“I could not see tears in the eyes of my employees, could not sleep when I saw what happened,” he added.

Goyal refused to comment on the number of employees who had been sacked, saying whatever the number, all of them would be reinstated.

“The financial woes faced by my company due to poor aviation business led to the termination of these employees. I have not spoken to anyone from the management. Cost cutting has to be done but we will stand by our employees. My management might not like it but I have taken the decision from my conscience,” the Jet Airways chief said.

Earlier this week, Jet had sacked some 850 employees after its mega alliance with Kingfisher Airlines and had said it could dismiss another 1,100-odd in a cost-cutting move.

All the sacked employees - cabin crew, pilots, ground staff, airport services and management department - were either probationers or had served for less than six months.

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