Air Deccan ceases its operations, all employees put on sabbatical without pay – Times of India

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NEW DELHI: Regional airliner Air Deccan announced on Sunday that it is ceasing its operations until further notice and all employees are being put on sabbatical without pay amid coronavirus pandemic.
The airline’s CEO A K Singh in a mail to employees said following the move to stop schedule passenger operations during the lockdown, “Air Deccan has no choice but to cease its operations until further notice. With heavy heart, I am also compelled to inform that all existing employees of Air Deccan (permanent, temporary and contractual) are being put on sabbatical without pay with immediate effect.”
Even before the 21-day lockdown, Air Deccan was not in the pink of health in terms of passenger operations. DGCA’s provisional data shows it operated 996 flights in 2018, flying 7,635 passengers that year. In 2019 and January and February of 2020, DGCA data shows, it operated very few flights and had a very high flight cancellation rate.
“Air Deccan was a financially very weak airline which could not operate a lion’s share of the RCS routes awarded to it. But unless coronavirus pandemic is over soon and people start flying again, some bigger airlines will also find it difficult to continue,” said an aviation industry insider.
“In my past two decades of aviation experience, I have personally seen several cycles of highs and lows. However, the situation in hand was never seen before and is utmost serious – both socially and economically. I am writing this email after aviation ministry and DGCA (asked) all scheduled passenger airlines to (temporarily for the duration of lockdown) cease overall operations from March 24, 2020. In view of the recent global and domestic issues and subsequent directive by the Indian regulator, Air Deccan has no choice but to cease its operations until further notice,” CEO A K Singh’s mail says.

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