The CEO of Kingfisher Airlines is asking the employees of the shut-down carrier to return to work so they can find financing to resume operations.
Kingfisher has not paid its employees in over 7 months and had to halt operations on October 1st after an employee protest turned violent.
“Without all of you, without exception, coming back to work, we will have no way forward,” CEO Sanjay Aggarwal said in a letter to employees on Tuesday.
“We have been working relentlessly to try and rectify this situation, and that too against all odds,” Aggarwal wrote in the letter seen by Reuters.
The debt-ridden airline owes as much as $2.5 billion by some estimates. The airline once had a fleet of 64 planes in the air but that number was reduced to 10 by September before they completely shut down.
‘Late on Friday, India’s aviation regulator sent a “show-cause” notice to Kingfisher asking why its license to fly should not be cancelled after failing to provide a “safe, efficient and reliable service.”
The airline was given 15 days to respond.
The regulator has also asked Kingfisher to stop selling tickets until its concerns are resolved.
“We are aware it is a big ask, but no potential investor will put his money in an airline that is not operational. Neither will our esteemed guests come back to us unless we commence operations soon,” Aggarwal wrote to staff.’
Kingfisher launched in 2005 but has never turned a profit.