Three Senior Jet Airways Executives Quit Ahead Of Relaunch

Jet Airways is facing resignations at the top level, with three senior employees leaving the company as it prepares for a relaunch. The carrier is in the process of restarting operations, and three top-level employees quitting ahead of the relaunch is the last thing it wants.


Three senior-level executives have quit Jet Airways (Jet) as the airline prepares for a relaunch later this year. According to reports, the executives who have resigned include Captains Niraj Chandan (head of flight safety), Vishesh Oberoi (head of operations), and Sorab Variava (head of training).


Executives handling such crucial roles leaving close to the airline’s relaunch is not a good image for Jet, which is trying to distance itself from its troubled past and start afresh.

These positions must be filled before the airline’s first flight. Another senior executive, Vishesh Khanna, appointed vice president-sales, distribution, and customer engagement in March, has also quit and joined IndiGo.

The Jalan-Kalrock consortium (JKC), which now owns the company, however, appears not to worry too much and says that the top management is ready for any challenges ahead. In response to Business Standard’s query, a spokesperson of JKC commented,

“We do not comment on rumours and speculations. Exits and entries occur in any organisation. The senior management team for Jet Airways is now fully in place and we remain committed for the earliest recommencement of operations of Jet Airways.”

Past baggage

While the attempt to resurrect Jet Airways is commendable, it hasn’t exactly been a clear path for the new owners. Jet enjoys a certain brand value in India, but its troubles from the past continue to haunt it. In July, the group of lenders to whom Jet owes millions threatened the carrier with insolvency if it did not pay them the proceeds from rentals of its aircraft.

Jet owes a lot of cash to many lenders and stakeholders, including ex-employees and ticket claimants. So, any source of revenue for the airline is being carefully observed, with attempts being made to direct the funds to those demanding their money back.

Jet received its flying permit before Akasa Air, but the latter was able to start operations before it. The difference is that Akasa is starting with a clean slate, but Jet continues to be troubled by its past. And three senior executives quitting at a crucial point isn’t a good start for the airline.

The road ahead

Jet’s new owners were planning to restart operations in September, but so far, no official announcement has been made. But recently, the airline management has been busy hiring and training cabin crew for future operations and even holding discussions with aircraft manufacturers for potential orders.

Jet Airways received its AOC in May this year. Photo: Getty Images

As reported earlier, Jet is said to be in “advanced talks” with Airbus for an order of 50 A220 aircraft. For now, it is likely to start operations in a limited capacity with a handful of airplanes, most likely the Boeing 737, until it gradually expands its reach over the months.

Here’s hoping the current development is a temporary roadblock in the carrier’s path to successfully embarking on a second journey.

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