Jet Airways to fly 75 planes from April 26

A day after the exit of founding chairman Naresh Goyal from its board, Jet Airways seems to be in high spirits and has submitted to the government an ambitious plan of flying 75 aircraft from April 26.

“We met the management of Jet Airways today… all top officials from finance, commercial department, engineering etc were there… they have said that there will be no more groundings and as per their plan, they will fly 40 more planes by the end of April,” said civil aviation secretary Pradeep Singh Kharola after meeting State Bank of India (SBI) chairman Rajnish Kumar and CEO of Jet Airways Vinay Dube among other officials during the course of the day.

The airline has told the ministry and the regulator Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) that it will hold negotiations and discussions with its lessors over the next few days to reactivate the grounded fleet.

At present, 54 aircraft of Jet Airways are grounded due to non-payment of lease rentals. The airline’s total fleet stands at 119, of which 103 were flying till December, a senior government official said.

“We have told Jet Airways to convince the lessors, we are not part of the financial discussions that the airline has with lenders but we want to ensure that the interim funding is put to optimal use,” Kharola added.

Based on this plan, the airline is also reinstating around 50 flights, reconnecting Bhuj, Mangalore, Aurangabad and Bhopal under its network, CNBC-TV18 had reported earlier on Tuesday.

However, the dismal financial and operational health of Jet Airways has acted as the latest trigger in the reduction of capacity from the market, leading to a surge in airfares owing to a huge mismatch between capacity and demand.
26/03/19 CNBC TV18


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