NEW DELHI: Cash-strapped Jet Airways on Wednesday admitted that seven more aircraft had been grounded due to non-payment of dues to lessors.
“Further to our letter dated 23 February, 2019, we now write to inform you that an additional seven aircraft have been grounded due to non-payment of amounts outstanding to lessors under their respective lease agreements,” the airline said.
On Saturday, the airline had announced that it had grounded two more aircraft in addition to the four grounded earlier this month over defaults with its lessors. Jet has a fleet of about 123 planes, including 16 aircraft it owns.
The airline also informed that it had cancelled multiple flights for February 28 due to operational issues. The flights to and from New Delhi, Guwahati, Mumbai, Bengaluru, Abu Dhabi, Doha, Bangkok, Chennai, Pune, Coimbatore, Indore, Kathmandu, Udaipur, among other key cities are cancelled, the airline said in a statement.
The cancellations and grounding of planes come at a time when Jet, which has a debt of over $1 billion is trying to stay afloat. On Monday, airline founder Naresh Goyal and partner Etihad had tried to give confidence about the airline to passengers, employees and creditors.
“We are confident that once the bank-led provisional resolution plan is finalized and implemented, Jet Airways will re-emerge as a viable and robust airline to reclaim its rightful place as airline of first choice for its customers,” Goyal and Etihad CEO Tony Douglas said in a joint statement.
More trouble in offing
Multiple reports this week have highlighted that the debt-stricken airline may have grounded more than 20 aircraft due to shortage of spare parts and inability to pay the lessors, and might ground more planes in the coming days.