Take over Jet Airways to save thousands from unemployment: Shiv Sena tells Government

Take over Jet Airways to save thousands from unemployment: Shiv Sena tells Government
The Sena urged PM Modi to take a cue from his predecessors PMs Jawaharlal Nehru & Indira Gandhi in nationalising insurance and airline companies (Picture Courtesy: Al Jazeera)

The Shiv Sena on Monday urged the NDA government to take over the temporarily grounded private carrier Jet Airways in a bid to save the airline and prevent its staff from losing their jobs.

In an editorial in party mouthpiece ‘Saamana’, the party asked Prime Minister Narendra Modi to take a note from his predecessors PMs Jawaharlal Nehru and Indira Gandhi in nationalising insurance and airline companies.

The cash-starved Jet Airways ceased all its operations temporarily last week after its request for Rs 400 crore emergency fund from its lenders, to whom it already owes Rs 8,500 crore, was rejected in the absence of collaterals.

“Such incidents underscore the foresight of Pandit Nehru and Indira Gandhi and their insistence on nationalisation of insurance and airline companies in the country. PM Narendra Modi needs to show similar foresight in the matter of Jet Airways,” the Sena said.

“Our demand to the government is that it take over Jet Airways and save its staff from getting unemployed,” it added.

The party further stated that it had presented issues of the airline’s staff before the government and noted that investors had demanded the exit of Jet Airways’ chairman and founder Naresh Goyal.

However, despite Goyal’s exit from the airline, not even Rs 500 was disbursed to its employees in lieu of the Rs 400 crore it was expected to receive from State Bank of India.

The Uddhav Thackeray-led party, an ally of the BJP at the Centre and in Maharashtra, also wondered “if some corporate force was acting behind the curtains to ensure the airline’s collapse”.

Breaking Indian businesses and laying red carpet for foreign investors could not be the nation’s policy, it opined.

Citing the example of the government providing financial assistance of Rs 29,000 crore to Air India since it was a state-run company, the Sena said Jet Airways and the now defunct Kingfisher were also Indian companies.

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