New Delhi: The Indian Commercial Pilots’ Association (ICPA) on Tuesday sought ‘one rank one pay’ for all the pilots of the national passenger carrier Air India.
In a letter to Civil Aviation Minister Suresh Prabhu, ICPA urged the ministry to address the pilots’ pay parity issue which is the legacy of Air India-Indian Airlines merger that took place more than a decade ago.
According to ICPA, from October 2017, the Air India management had started paying a section of wide-body pilots an ad-hoc amount at par with the new proposal which is yet to be approved by the ministry.
The letter alleges that half of the flying allowance paid to wide-body pilots is still being paid in fixed US dollar exchange rate of Rs 45.50, while the present US dollar exchange rate has reached an all time high of Rs 74.
As per the letter, while majority of Air India pilots are paid international layover subsistence allowance on actual international night stops ($200), a section of wide body pilots continue to receive a fixed monthly international layover allowance irrespective of number of international night stops undertaken.
“We fail to understand as to why the top management has turned a blind eye to this issue which is bleeding the national carrier of high value foreign exchange,” the October 16 letter said.
“In spite of being in the know of the US dollars being paid to these pilots at an exchange rate of INR 45.50, the Director (Operations) has taken no initiative to correct the wrong for reasons best known to him,” it said.