Striking staff reject Kingfisher offer
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There was no sign of an end to the 24-day-old impasse in Kingfisher Airlines with the striking employees today rejecting a fresh offer of staggered payment of three months' salary dues and insisting on lumpsum amount.
"The management has been shooting such letters regularly, but they have failed to honour their commitments. We reject this offer and demand a lumpsum payment of a minimum of three months' salary, if not of four months," a protesting senior engineer said in New Delhi.
After two rounds of talks in Mumbai yesterday, Kingfisher CEO Sanjay Aggarwal today sent a letter to the staff saying the March 2012 salary will be paid on or before October 25.
"We have urged them to accept our offer and should they agree, they will receive the April 2012 salary on or before October 31 and the May 2012 salary before Diwali. In essence, the Company will pay three months of salary before Diwali to these employees," he said in the letter.
Not convinced by the mail which reiterated the offer made yesterday, the employees, who held meetings in Delhi, Bangalore, Chennai and Mumbai, rejected the offer.
The agitators alleged that the management, by posting such mails to individual employees, was "trying to break our unity".
Aggarwal held out the assurance that the remaining backlog of salaries from June to September "will be paid once the company has been recapitalized upon equity infusion."
Commencing December, salaries would be paid in 30-day arrears on a monthly basis. That is, the airline would pay the October salary in December, the November salary in January and so on, the CEO said.
"It is essential that we resume operations at the earliest post approval from the regulatory body," he said.
The employees, who have not been paid for the last seven months, have been on strike since September 29, which led the airline to declare a lockout that has now been extended indefinitely till normalcy is restored.
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