India’s national carrier Air India on Thursday (18 April) announced a ‘rescue’ offer under which stranded international passengers of Jet Airways will be able to avail special fares on its platform, reports The Hindu BusinessLine (BL).
On 17 April, Jet Airways management decided to suspend all flight operations temporarily. The financially-stressed private airline was troubled with a severe cash crunch and mounting debts. In the last few weeks, it had only 30-40 operational planes.
Due to the grounding of planes, many passengers who had booked tickets on Jet Airways in advance were left stranded. In response to this, the civil aviation ministry issued a directive to other airlines to consider ways to offer “rescue fares” for such passengers.
Subsequently Jet Airways passengers flying to overseas airports such as Paris, London Heathrow, Singapore, Dubai, Hong Kong, Abu Dhabi, Jeddah, Dammam, and Muscat, have been offered “special stranded” fares by Air India.
The Rise And Fall
Launched in 1993 as an air-taxi operator, Jet Airways became the largest Indian Airline in the third quarter of 2010. The airline commanded the Indian skies and generated global interest with its premium service. It notably signed a deal with Etihad Airways to sell 24 per cent stake to the UAE airline.
As per various aviation experts, Jet Airways’ financial troubles can be traced back to its $500 million acquisition of Air Sahara in 2006 which was dubbed as an inflated deal. Air Sahara was re-branded as Jet Lite but its financial troubles meant that Jet wrote off its entire investment in the airline in 2015.
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