Private airline Jet Airways will restart domestic flights from the first quarter of 2022, three years after it was grounded due to a financial crisis, PTI reported on Monday, citing a statement from the company. Its international flights will restart from the last quarter of 2022.
The first flight of Jet Airways will operate on the Delhi-Mumbai route, the company said. The airline will be now have its headquarters in Delhi instead of Mumbai.
Once the country’s largest private carrier, the Jet Airways fleet was grounded in April 2019 after mounting huge losses. The company had filed for bankruptcy in June 2019.
In October last year, United Kingdom-based Jalan Kalrock Consortium, a group of private investors submitted a revival plan to the National Companies Law Tribunal. The tribunal approved the plan in June.
On Monday, Murari Lal Jain, the lead member of Jalan Kalrock Consortium, issued a statement detailing on plans of resuming Jet Airways’ operations.
“Our plan is to have 50-plus aircraft in three years and 100-plus planes in five years, which also fits perfectly well with the short-term and long-term business plan of the consortium,” Jain said.
The statement also said that the airline’s creditors will be finalised in the coming months according to the plan approved by the National Companies Law Tribunal.
The airline’s newly-appointed Chief Executive Officer Sudhir Gaur said they have hired more than 150 full-time employees and will recruit over 1,000 staffers during the financial year 2021-’22.
The airline was in the process of revalidating its Air Operator Certificate, the statement said. The certificate will approve whether Jet Airways has the personnel, assets and a system in place to ensure the safety of its employees and the general public.
After the announcement, Jet Airways’ share price rose 4.97% to Rs 83.50 on the Bombay Stock Exchange in Monday’s afternoon trading.
The grounding of Jet Airways
Jet Airways’ problems came to light after it defaulted on a loan payment in January 2019. Founders Naresh Goyal and Anita Goyal resigned from the airline’s board of directors in March 2019, after they were accused of fraud.
On April 17, 2019, the carrier decided to temporarily suspend all its domestic and international operations as banks refused to provide emergency funds.
The company’s lenders were unable to find a suitable investor either. In June 2019, they filed for bankruptcy at the National Company Law Tribunal.
In August 2019, the Enforcement Directorate initiated proceedings against Naresh Goyal. They discovered that he owned 19 companies, five of which were located abroad. Goyal was siphoning money to foreign countries through these companies, the investigating agency said.
As of September 25, 2020, Jet Airways owed its creditors an amount of Rs Rs 40,259 crore, out of which the company admitted claims worth Rs 15,525 crore. The Jalan Kalrock Consortium had promised an infusion of Rs 1,375 crore, of which Rs 475 crore will be used for payment to stakeholders and financial creditors.