A letter was written to the aircraft manufacturer Airbus by IndiGo technicians complaining that the airline is not following standard maintenance procedures leading to risking passengers’ safety.
They said the technical staff has been on a strike for a couple of days and the airline is operating flights without proper maintenance.
The letter written by the All-India Aircraft Technicians on July 12 asked Airbus to intervene to avoid any untoward incidents with aircraft supplied by the manufacturer.
Calling the allegation baseless, IndiGo said, “IndiGo follows the highest standards of aircraft maintenance and adheres to all regulatory norms. Such allegations are completely baseless and are being spread with malicious intent.”
“I request you to kindly intervene in this matter and ask the operators to share maintenance data of the past seven days.
We have a fleet of over 280 aircraft with high operational availability, making it one of the safest airlines in the world. We are committed to providing an on-time, affordable, safe and a courteous and hassle-free service to all our customers.”Letter written to Airbus
The technicians said in the letter that “… the operators to whom you have leased your aircraft are not following the standard procedure of maintenance. For the past four days, technical staff are on strike and still they are flying the aircraft without proper maintenance and even they are deferring the scheduled maintenance”.
When contacted, an Airbus spokesperson said, “We do not comment on the operations of our customers.”
A day after this letter, IndiGo terminated the services of a few technicians who participated in the strike. However, it is unclear if they were terminated due to the letter. The strike was called in protest against lower pay. Several aircraft technicians reported being sick and skipping work to press for salary hikes.
The technicians pointed out that improper maintenance can have a major impact and cause serious damage to Airbus’s image in the international market.
Naming a couple of airline officials who allegedly are responsible for the situation, the technicians said, “They have downgraded the maintenance standards of your aircraft. You can directly question them for improper handling of aircraft.”
An official of the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) told that the situation had improved as they had conducted checks.
Confirming this, Arun Kumar, director general, DGCA, said, “We have carried out spot checks to ascertain and have found things in order. The issue stands resolved and the operations normal.”
Very few technicians reported for the night shift at the Delhi and Hyderabad airports. A week before that, the budget carrier’s flight operations were hit by en masse leave when employees opted to appear for walk-in recruitment interviews at rival Air India.