Mallyas fly high even as Kingfisher Airlines crashes

New Delhi, Oct 21: while the employees of the grounded Kingfisher Airlines (KFA), which recently saw its flying licence suspended by the DGCA, were struggling to maintain a minimum standard of livelihood, reports said that both Vijay Mallya, owner of the airline, and his son Siddharth, were busy with other preoccupations abroad.

Mallya senior's personal staff said he was abroad and his employees were speculating him to be in the UK. Mallya, referred to as the 'King of Good Times', was nowhere to be seen even the aviation ministry clearly said that the DGCA would suspend the KFA's licence. Mallya did not call up or meet the Union aviation minister, Ajit Singh, to find an way out of the mess for his airline and its employees.

Sources said Mallya Senior had left the country on his private jet, VT-VJM, about three weeks ago and there was no news on his returning to the country. KFA employees who have been spotting the business tycoon claimed he was last spotted at Yeongam in South Korea where he was attending a popular motor-racing competition. A team owned jointly by him was participating in the competition. It was learnt.

Siddharth Mallya, for whom the KFA was a gift from his father on his 18th birthday, was not found sympathising with the airline employees either. Mallya Junior was found tweeting about his shooting with Kingfisher's 'calendar girls' and playing volleyball with bikini-clad models, views on a London pub, judgment on the English Cricket Board's move on cricketer Kevin Pietersen and every other object under the sun but did not spend a word or make a kind gesture towards his own employees and their families seriously hit by financial hardships.

KFA employees believed that Mallya senior might return to Delhi next year for the Greater Noida Grand Prix. The employees have been protesting non-payment of their salaries since March this year. Recently, wife of one of the ground employees of the KFA in Delhi committed suicide for she was unable to cope up the financial woes.

While some employees got their children admitted to cheaper schools, others were having a harrowing time to pay back loans to banks and individuals. One employee's family was also thrown out of its rented house for he failed to pay the rents.

Mallya's private aircraft has no problem flying

Even though the KFA crashed, Mallya senior's personal Airbus Corporate Jet (ACJ), which is registered after his name as VT-VJM (VJM is Vijay Mallya's nickname), continue to operate. Mallya had two flying licences, a schedule operator permit for the KFA, which is has now been suspended and the other , a non-schedule operator permit for his private super deluxe 22-seater Airbus A-319.

Personnel for Mallya's personal plane received their payments regularly even when the KFA employees did not get their salaries. They were paid at least the daily allowance for accompanying the chairman on board, it is learnt.

The VT-VJM crew also had a tiff with other pilots who asked them why they were not backing the employees of the grounded airline. The VT-VJM staff said they would not go jobless even if the KFA shut down for the personal aircraft will always be used by Mallya and his top men.

OneIndia News

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