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Banks mull Kingfisher debt crisis

Manmohan on Saturday said govt would explore ways to help the private carrier.

Written by Agencies | New Delhi | Published: November 13, 2011 9:17:28 pm

Beleaguered Kingfisher Airlines would have to wait some more time for relief as its lenders continued deliberations today towards resolving the crisis,a day after Prime Minister Manmohan Singh said the government would explore ways to help the private carrier.

The cash-strapped airline cancelled 40 more flights today taking the total number of cancelled services to over 250 flights in one week putting thousands of passengers to inconvenience.

Bankers of Kingfisher,who met in Mumbai yesterday,are holding more rounds of talks on its debt restructuring. Kingfisher is looking for additional working capital to tide over its severe cash crunch.

Kingfisher has approached lender-banks for a reappraisal of working capital requirements following a surge in price of jet fuel in recent months.

Civil Aviation Minister Vayalar Ravi has ruled out any bailout package for the airlines but said efforts would be made to help the ailing aviation industry.

Asked whether Government had decided on allowing FDI by foreign airlines in India,Ravi told reporters “it is not a matter to be decided in a day. The proposal may come and then it will be considered”. Kingfisher promoter Vijay Mallya is making a strong pitch for allowing foreign airlines to pick up stakes in Indian carriers.

Ravi,who is leaving for Bahrain on a three-day visit from tomorrow,said he hasn’t yet met the Prime Minister on problems faced by Kingfisher and the aviation industry.

In a tweet,Mallya said foreign governments go “out of the way” to support airlines but a leading industrialist and Bajaj Auto chief Rahul Bajaj said the private sector should not be bailed out by the government and “those who die must die”.

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