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Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Air India: Annual May-Strike Fest-2012 Still On!


The pilots of Air India have only problems and more problems. They don't get their salaries for months or not quite regularly, they don't get their promotions in time, they suffer from career regression and they don't get the benefits they are right royally entitled to. Domestic Indian Airlines and international Air India got merged indeed in 2007, but the communal divide between the two erstwhile sets of pilots only accentuated over time. The two communities compete still for the perks and opportunities like for example flying the forthcoming Dreamliner Boeing 787 which figured in the list of strike demands too and baby-cry on missing any. The pilots have been suffering so badly that they are forced to put personal issues first and company or national interests later. How sad!

So they did not approach the Air India management for representing or deliberating on their problems, because they hold the management as the culprit for all their ills. They felt they were the best bets for managing their own problems. 

So they did not approach the Government of India for negotiating their demands either, because they proudly hold the view that any talks with the government is an extremely routine procedure and thus they get no pulling force to get their demands through. 

So they looked towards their most loyal passengers to get going bang-on. Their May Strike-Fest of 2011 was a huge turbulence and so they decided to make it an annual event. After all those years of experience they know the importance of the month of May only too well. In this month, known as the period of summer rush, their passengers visit native places and make holiday plans for both domestic and international sectors. The passengers book well in advance as they know that come May all  flights, trains and even buses get full and getting a ticket at the last minute becomes almost impossible. The pilots understand this and so they ensure that all passengers of their cancelled flights due to their Fest get helplessly stranded and remain stranded. They think they can never expect get a better platform than this to bargain for their righteous personal interests and aspirations. 

The Air India Pilots' May-Strike Fest-2012 has already completed a magnificent week and has entered the ninth day today. There seems to be no end to the continuing revelries yet. 

How long would Air India continue to be a 'national pride' at the cost of the nation, at the cost of all the hapless passengers, at the cost of all Government of India staff whose travel destiny remains hostage to Air India and, to the benefit of the influential and the powerful whose majestic travel on Air India translates into more costs for the nation? Does democracy give the right-to-blackmail to any interested party or individuals? Why democracy fails to prevent a strike by an interested party even after a High Court order declares it illegal? 

By the way, what is a democracy? Sorry...you see...people tend to get confused in this great democratic atmosphere of all the toon-toona-toons by all the aflatoons in the melee of all the cartoons


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