Aug 7, 2012

Lawmaker or businessmen : What now, Mr. Mallya?

Word has it that Kingfisher Airlines pilots and engineers (those that have stayed back) are joining hands to call a work strike from August 9th

They haven't got salaries for half a year now.

If a plan like that goes through, this could mean a skeleton 12 planes and 85 daily flights schedule may also go for a free spin. (Kingfisher had a 66 aircraft fleet till last year)

The airline's flamboyant owner Vijay Mallya is likely to be in the capital, New Delhi from a Europe tour (F1 and other things) this week to attend the Parliament session where he also holds the office as a lawmaker in Rajya Sabha.

A six week parliament session suggests no real policy decision (foreign airline investment in domestic carriers being the talking point) will be announced till the session gets over.

That means no salaries for employees for 9 months perhaps? Who would have thought that a five star airline, one of India's best brands, would need to holocaust its ego like this. And leave its starry eyed employees in a mountain of debt and shame.

Picture above : Kingfisher chairman Vijay Mallya with ministers Praful Patel, Sharad Pawar and SM Krishna at the lavish launch party in 2005


  1. The connection between politics and airlines is shown well in the image you selected. If I'm not mistaken Mr Patel is especially close to Jet? How terrible this looks for India. Mr Mallya's hubris one can understand but the appalling treatment of the staff is unprecedented. How come nobody is in jail yet?

  2. He keeps it going with the blessings of government. He gets free advertisement for his liquor business because Kingfisher is in the news everyday and his "display" is visible at all airports. Engines and most parts are covered but the large Kingfisher Logo is the free advertisement space! Clever Crony Capitalism at its best.

  3. He has not paid the income tax of the pilots salary which he has cut at source. The amount works out in crores. If a common man does not pay taxes he is summoned quite fast. I wonder how he is walking Scott free. Possible explanation is a corrupt system, where the tax man also looks the other way.....wonder why the ex KF pilots are not going to court together.

  4. Mallya is a beggar masquerading as a billionaire....... gets a handout from PSU Banks who have an exposure of 7000 Cr+....... they convert his debt to equity holdings in his Airline at a huge premium....yet he is able to ride a sanctimonious position saying that he needs no bailout!!! My sympathies are with the staff at all levels at KFA......... poor blighters have been de facto working gratis and keeping his airline afloat, while the beggar billionaire sups on champagne and caviar at various exotic locales across the world...... happens only in India....... elsewhere in the world he would have been behind bars, but here he's able to get rid of an inconvenient DGCA, and have the "watchdog" replaced by some pliant person who can be arm twisted into doing his bidding........ "Sau main se 99 be-imaan, phir bhi mera bharat mahaan"

  5. Thanks for all the comments, keep them coming. Helps frame fresh thoughts for stories ahead