New Delhi, Oct 13: Just days after Tata Sons won the bid to acquire Air India, all India unions of Air India have written a joint letter to the Civil Aviation Ministry raising concerns over their cash, leave, medical benefits, accommodation of employees and arrears.
In the letter addressed to the secretary of the ministry of civil aviation, Rajiv Bansal, the unions have demanded that employees should be allowed to stay in the airline flats till monetization or at least for a year as Tatas are giving a one-year employment guarantee.
Also, it demands that the employees are given the option to encash their paid leaves before handing over the airline to Tata Group. Check out the six demands listed by the union.
Leave Encashment Option: All Unions have been promised their leave encashment from the time meetings held by the then Hon Minister of Civil Aviation and then-Secretary MOCA since Jan 2020 until the most recent meeting with CMD-AI on 01/09/2021. As unions, we demand that the option to encash or carry forward immediately our PL/SL be clarified before the handover. Those who opt to encash it now may commence with new leave accounts, and those who have opted to carry forward may be credited with that leave balance.
Air India Colonies: We had requested you to allow employees to continue living in the colonies until their superannuation or monetization since the subsidiaries were not being transferred and would continue with the government. The ministries letters after that have been very harsh in principle, demanding that all employees sign undertakings in 15 days or pay 15 lakhs penalties. We urge you to intercede on behalf of the Air Indians who reside in these colonies to allow them to reside in them for a reasonable period of at least a year. Since the new buyer is providing employees with a one-year employment guarantee, the colony facility should at least be co-terminus with that data if not until VRS is provided.
Medical Benefits: We are concerned since we have no clarity on the medical benefits for the serving and the retired/ retiring employees. We, as Unions, are yet to receive a final response as to which of the two options has been finalized. We are also concerned about OPD, Hospitalization, and disbursal of Medicines, etc, for serving and retired employees.
Restoration of pre- Covid Allowances / Emoluments: The allowances of all employees had been cut during the first wave of Covid last year. Now that the flying is fast reaching normalization and passenger traffic getting back to pre-Covid levels, we must return to our pre-Covid emoluments.
Payment of all Arrears: This issue has been hanging fire for years now, and unions have demanded all their arrears to be settled before handover. For the erst. IA Pilots, the arrears go back to their 1997 Agreement, and for the erst. Al Pilots /Cabin Crew includes pending flying allowance arrears/ emoluments of 2006/ 2007 agreements and arrears arising out of the unilateral 25% Pay cut made on account of JDC from 2012. The arrears must be paid in full with interest prior to handover, and a statement of arrears promised to us should be furnished immediately.