Jet Airways cancels three flights for Friday

A Jet Airways is India’s second-largest full-service airline. More

Cash strapped Jet Airways has cancelled all its worldwide flights and continues to cancel domestic more flights, raising doubts about its survival over the next few days.

The airline also suspended its global operations for a day, while 1o more planes were forced out of the fleet.

An agency report quoting a source said, "Jet Airways flights to London, Amsterdam and Paris from Mumbai, New Delhi and Bengaluru scheduled for April 12 are cancelled for operational reasons". The total number of operational aircraft fell to 14 on Thursday, people in the know said. "Jet Airways sincerely regrets inconvenience caused to its guests", it added.

Almost 30 Jet flights from Mumbai to Delhi, Bengaluru, Hyderabad and Chennai on April 12 and 13 and 23 flights from Delhi have also been cancelled.

However, founder Naresh Goyal, who had also planned to participate in the bids and was expected to put in bids Thursday, did not do so till late evening, the sources said. It was supposed to get Rs 1,500 crore in terms of interim loan funding and hasn't received it.

The drastic measure was announced after the airline informed the exchanges that it was forced to ground 10 more planes due to non-payment of rentals to the lessors. "Following this, there are no Jet flights to and from Kolkata, Patna, Guwahati and other airports in the region", said a travel industry source. As per rules, an airline needs to have a minimum of 20 aircraft to be eligible to operate worldwide flights.

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According to a second official, the ministry has sought a report from aviation regulator Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) on the current fleet size of Jet Airways.

Of the 14 aircraft that it is operating as of Thursday, eight are wide-body B777s (seven) and an A330- generally used for long-haul global operations.

State-run banks have taken a temporary stake in the airline to keep it running, with lenders laying out terms for potential bidders for the carrier.

SBI Caps, which invited Expression of Interest (EoI) for stake sale in Jet Airways on April 8, has already extended the date for submission of bids to April 12 from April 10.

According to industry sources, the airline is set to operate only five departures from Mumbai, one from Bengaluru and about 20 from Delhi on Friday. Note that a foreign carrier can neither hold over 49 per cent in a domestic airline, nor effectively control it.

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