The union mentioned Air India was paying about 500,000 to 1 million rupees ($6,800 to $13,700) as compensation to the household if a pilot died of Covid-19 whereas performing their duties. The quantity, it mentioned, was a fraction of what different airways paid and could be simply sufficient to care for a deceased colleague’s hospital payments. Indigo, a non-public airline, was paying 50 million rupees or greater than $680,000, the union mentioned in one among its letters.
The union mentioned that it had despatched repeated requests to the federal government asking that flight crews be prioritized for vaccinations. In a letter addressed to India’s well being minister, Dr. Harsh Vardhan, on April 16, the union urged the federal government to acknowledge crew members as “important staff.”
“We urge you to vaccinate all aircrew on the earliest,” it mentioned.
Two Air India pilots who requested anonymity fearing reprisals from the federal government mentioned they had been annoyed by the way in which their requires higher compensation and protesting wage cuts had fallen on deaf ears. In addition they mentioned they feared being uncovered to new variants of the virus circulating in different nations whereas doing their jobs.
Regardless of all of that, the pilots mentioned they had been being paid salaries that had been practically 40 to 70 p.c lower than what they obtained earlier than the pandemic. The pay cuts got here into impact in April final yr as international journey got here to a halt.
Hardeep Singh Puri, India’s civil aviation minister, has mentioned that the nation’s Vande Bharat Mission to evacuate Indians was the “world’s largest” repatriation drive, transporting greater than 9 million individuals to date. “India didn’t cower within the face of this well being disaster of the century,” he mentioned in a tweet on Tuesday.
However neither Mr. Puri nor Air India have responded to their pilots’ requests. The Ministry of Civil Aviation in New Delhi didn’t instantly reply to a request for remark.
In Could, the union wrote a letter to Air India, asking firm executives to point out “an identical kindness” to what it confirmed when it requested its pilots to point out up for obligation when it wanted to rescue Indians from among the worst-affected areas on this planet, together with the USA, China and Italy.