While the Civil Aviation Minister Ajit Singh voiced his concern in the Lok Sabha over the image of Air India being hit due to the ongoing pilots strike,the reputation of the carriers staff took a beating in the House today.
Nearly 100 cases of irregularities by employees of the national carrier are being investigated by the airlines vigilance department,government said in the Parliament.
The irregularities range from false allowance claims,sneaking out liquor to stealing airconditioners,aircraft parts and tubelights. The list of offenders includes employees from the top management to the lowest level functionaries.
In the last three and half years,the government initiated disciplinary action against 238 employees,nine of whom were sacked,while penalties were initiated against the rest. In five separate cases,the airline initiated recovery proceedings of Rs 51 lakh against 26 employees. The most glaring cases of indiscipline includes false allowance claims to the tune of Rs 2.2 crore by a senior pilot in 2008. In another incident,16 cabin crew were found pilfering huge quantities of items and liqour in 2008. Another flight purser was apprehended by Delhi customs as he tried to sneak out 372 mini liquor bottles from the plane.
In the case of a functional director,accused of benefiting an event organiser by way of monetary concessions and two chartered flights,AI has referred the matter to Central Vigilance Commission for its first stage advice. A CBI report found 11 officials guilty in a Rs 7.95 crore swindle.
A general manager-level officer found wrongfully claiming fuel and car maintenance reimbursements despite being provided an official car along with a driver. Three officers were found guilty of stealing airconditioners,aircraft parts,engine oil and tubelights from the engineering department. One officer was caught availing complimentary tickets on the luxury train Palace on Wheels by abusing his position as the sales department dedicated towards the government.