Premium carrier Vistara, a Tata Group-Singapore Airlines Joint Venture, is hiring around 500 – 100 pilots and 400 cabin crew – mostly from the grounded Jet Airways. This will be the airline’s largest hiring exercise since it began operations over three years back.
The move comes in wake of Jet Airways on April 17 announcing temporary grounding of operations after the lenders declined a Rs 400-crore lifeline, putting at stake 20,000 jobs and thousands of crores in passenger refunds, dues to vendors and over Rs 8,500 crore to banks.
The grounding of Jet has come as an opportunity for the market to hire readily-available skilled workforce from the licenced categories – pilots, engineers and cabin crew – and deploy them directly into specifics roles, thereby saving time and money on training them, sources said.
Tuesday was the last day of the two-day recruitment drive for the cabin crew at the Tatas-Singapore Airline-run Vistara, which took place simultaneously in Mumbai and Gurugram, they said.
"Vistara, which is likely to begin international operations soon, is in the process of inducting 100 pilots besides 400 cabin crew. Most of the new workforce is expected to come from the grounded carrier Jet," said a source.
Air India, SpiceJet and GoAir are other Indian carriers who have taken Jet’s pilots and cabin crew on board. Air India and Air India Express were also looking at inducting Jet’s B777s and B737s, respectively, but so far they have not done so.
SpiceJet said it would hire 500 from Jet, including 100 pilots.
Air India Express has also inducted around 25 commanders from the grounded airline's and plans to induct 20-25 more pilots. Its parent Air India has been discussing an internal proposal to lease five of the 10 Boeing 777s of Jet to expand its international footprint.
Meanwhile, in continuing woes for staff, Jet Airways has said there are no funds to pay premium for the group mediclaim policy that expires on Tuesday.
Jet Airways Chief People Officer Rahul Taneja has informed employees that the airline would not be able to fund the premium for the group mediclaim policy.
Noting that the group mediclaim policy would cease from May 1, Taneja urged employees to take a medical insurance cover of their choice.
The abrupt temporary closure of Jet due to cash crunch has left thousands of passengers in the lurch, forcing the ministry to allot some of the slots across domestic and international airports to other local carriers in a bid to help mitigate inconvenience.