Air India Express Sacks 30 Employees Over Mass Sick Leave

Air India Express has terminated the employment of at least 30 staff members, primarily cabin crew, following a wave of mass sick leave occurrences coinciding with flight cancellations. This action unfolded in the wake of nearly 300 employees from private airlines reporting sick and unresponsively turning off their phones, leading to significant disruptions in flight schedules.

The termination notices dispatched to the employees stated that the collective absence from duty exhibited a calculated and concerted effort to refrain from work without valid justification. Air India Express has issued an ultimatum, mandating the employees to resume their duties by Thursday evening under threat of disciplinary measures.

Since Tuesday night, the airline has been compelled to cancel over 100 international and domestic flights, with an additional 74 flights disrupted on Thursday alone. These cancellations have precipitated a crisis for the budget carrier, a subsidiary of Air India under the ownership of the Tata Group.

The terminated employees have been voicing grievances regarding revised employment terms and alleged disparities in the treatment of personnel. Consequently, the federal civil aviation ministry has requested a comprehensive report from Air India Express regarding the flight cancellations and has urged the airline to ensure compliance with passenger service standards prescribed by the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA).