India's Jet Airways faces imminent shutdown without emergency funds

Kenny Grant
April 17, 2019

Private airline Jet Airways on Wednesday said that it has chose to suspend all its operations, domestic as well as worldwide.

Embattled Jet Airways said on Wednesday it was halting all flight operations after its lenders rejected its plea for emergency funds, potentially bringing the curtains down on what was once India's largest private airline.

Reports claimed that the lenders have rejected its appeal for emergency funds worth Rs 400 crore to stay afloat.

On Monday, in a letter to its employees, Jet Airways had said that it planned to extend its suspension of global flights till Thursday as it had not received any interim funding from lenders.

After months of financial trouble, India's first private airline Jet Airways has made a decision to temporarily suspend operations.

Airways. We have also informed the DGCA, and the Ministries of Civil Aviation and Finance and other relevant government institutions, of this course of action.

"Bankers did not want to go for a piecemeal approach which would keep the carrier flying for a few days and then again risk having Jet come back for more interim funding", a bank source told the wire service. It explained that it can not afford to pay for fuel or other critical services to keep the operations going, as all its months-long attempts to seek both interim and long-term funding were in vain.

In its statement on Wednesday, the airline thanked its loyal customers for their patronage and support over 25 years and said it "sincerely and profusely apologizes for the disruption to the travel plans of all its guests".

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"Over the last several weeks and months, the company has tried every means possible to seek both interim and long-term funding".

Taking to Twitter, Mallya held the central government responsible for the collapse of his Kingfisher airlines as well as Jet Airways, an airline, he said, India should be "extremely proud of".

The airline, which had a total fleet of 119 planes until February with as many as almost 100 planes in operations, has come down to 37 flights using 5 planes for today.

The consortium of lenders, led by State Bank of India, invited expression of Interest for stake sale in the company to recover dues.

Jet Airways will now await the bid finalisation process by SBI and the consortium of Indian Lenders.

The agony of Jet Airways might soon be over.

The SBI is yet to announce a shortlist of prospective bidders but Indian media said four were in the running including Etihad Airways, which already owns a 24 percent stake.

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