Air India to send certain employees on leave without pay for 6 months to 5 years

Agencies
July 15, 2020

New Delhi, Jul 15: Air India has started the process of identifying employees, based on various factors like efficiency, health and redundancy, who will be sent on compulsory leave without pay (LWP) for up to five years, according to an official order.

The airline's board of directors have authorised its Chairman and Managing Director Rajiv Bansal to send employees on LWP "for six months or for a period of two years extendable upto five years, depending upon the following factors - suitability, efficiency, competence, quality of performance, health of the employee, instance of non-availability of the employee for duty in the past as a result of ill health or otherwise and redundancy", the order said on Tuesday.

The departmental heads in the headquarter as well as regional directors are required to assess each employee "on the above mentioned factors and identify the cases where option of compulsory LWP can be exercised", stated the order dated July 14.

"Names of such employees need to be forwarded to the General Manager (Personnel) in headquarter for obtaining necessary approval of CMD," the order added.

In response to queries regarding this matter, Air India spokesperson said,"We would not like to make any comment on the issue."

Aviation sector has been significantly impacted due to the travel restrictions imposed in India and other countries due to the coronavirus pandemic. All airlines in India have taken cost-cutting measures such as pay cuts, LWP and firings of employees in order to conserve cash flow.

For example, GoAir has put most of its employees on compulsory LWP since April.

India resumed domestic passenger flights from May 25 after a gap of two months due to the coronavirus pandemic.

However, the airlines have been allowed to operate only a maximum of 45 per cent of their pre-COVID domestic flights. Occupancy rate in Indian domestic flights has been around 50-60 per cent since May 25.

Scheduled international passenger flights continue to remain suspended in India since March 23.

The passenger demand for air travel will contract by 49 per cent in 2020 for Indian carriers in comparison to 2019 due to COVID-19 crisis, said global airlines body IATA on Monday.

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Agencies
September 15,2020

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Pilibhit, Sept 15: The Superintendent of Police (SP) Pilibhit, Jai Prakash Yadav, has recommended suspension of the arms licence of BJP district vice-president, Amit Balmiki, following a report filed by Pilibhit police stattion SHO Shrikant Dwivedi.

The SP has written to the District Magistrate Pulkit Khare to suspend the arms licence issued to Balmiki.

The controversy began when Balmiki reportedly attempted to take unauthorised possession of a residential plot.

The SHO said that in the 12-year-old dispute with one Dimple Gaur, over a 200 square metre plot in Dalchand locality, a Pilibhit civil court had ruled in favour of Gaur on February 19 this year.

On August 31, when she began construction on the plot, located next to her residence, Balmiki arrived with 26 henchmen and obstructed work.

After police booked both sides under sections 107/116(3) of CrPC, the Gaurs obtained bail against personal bonds, but Balmiki and his henchmen neither appeared before court nor sought bail, said the SHO.

SP Yadav said based on Dwivedi's report, he recommended the suspension of Balmiki's pistol licence.

Balmiki could not be contacted for his comment.

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News Network
September 17,2020

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Bengaluru, Sept 17: Rajya Sabha MP and Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) Karnataka leader Ashok Gasti passed away in Bengaluru on Thursday. He was admitted to a hospital in the capital city on September 2 after he tested positive for coronavirus (Covid-19).

The BJP leader who had also served as the chairman of Karnataka Backward Classes commission had taken oath as a Rajya Sabha MP on July 22 this year.

Gasti is credited for organizing the BJP in Raichur district of Karnataka. A member of the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) he rose through the ranks as an activist of the Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad (ABVP). He joined BJP when he was 18-years-old and headed the Yuva Morcha of Karnataka BJP.

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coastaldigest.com news network
September 29,2020

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Bengaluru, Sept 29: In what can be termed as a direct assault on media freedom, the authorities have forced a private channel in Karnataka go off air by seizing all the computers and other equipment from its office and blocking its social media accounts, after it aired news about the involvement of members of Chief Minister B S Yediyurappa’s family in acts of corruption.

After obtaining court order, police carried out searches at the offices of Power TV and the home of its managing director-editor Rakesh Shetty, and also questioned news anchor Rehman Hassan. The investigation was triggered by a complaint filed by the director of a construction firm who has been cited by the channel as a source of information on the alleged corruption involving the CM’s family.

Expressing shock over the development Rehman Hassan said that the around 250 employees of the channel are facing the risk of losing their job due to government’s action. “When the police came to our office with search warrant we cooperated with them completely. But provided them all the necessary information and data. But they took our system completely and blocked our Facebook and YuTube channels forcing us to go off air,” he lamented.

“It is not easy to run a news channel. There are 250 employees that are dependent on the channel. By forcing the channel to go off air the government has snatched their jobs too. They are crying,” he said.

The channel had run a series of programmes over the last month using a sting audio of alleged conversations of Rakesh Shetty with an important member of the CM’s family, WhatsApp chats exchanged by a construction firm official with another member of the family, and documents showing large deposits in banks accounts of firms linked to a family member.

After the sting was aired, the opposition Congress demanded Yediyurappa’s resignation, and a probe into the allegations by a sitting judge of the Supreme Court or a Special Investigation Team (SIT) monitored by the Chief Justice of Karnataka High Court.

The Chief Minister has challenged the opposition to prove the charges against his family. He declined to comment on the police action against the channel. “The matter is in court,” he said.

Amid political controversy over the sting, a police complaint was filed on September 24 by Chandrakanth Ramalingam, a director in Ramalingam Construction Company Limited (RCCL), which is involved in construction and irrigation projects in the state, alleging that the MD of the channel had coerced him into saying he had made payments to political persons, and had recorded the conversations.

Police have registered a case of criminal intimidation, forgery, extortion, cheating, and criminal conspiracy against the MD-editor of Power TV and others.

Ramalingam has alleged that he was approached by the MD in June, claiming he had connections to Home Minister Amit Shah, and could swing central and state contracts for RCCL.

According to the complaint, a copy of which was produced in the state legislature on Saturday by Law Minister J C Madhuswamy, the MD obtained details of RCCL’s projects in Karnataka, and offered to get an outstanding amount of Rs 140 crore from the Bengaluru Development Authority for a housing project in return for a 5 per cent commission. The company paid the channel official Rs 25 lakh after receiving a payment of Rs 7.79 crore from BDA in August.

Power TV claimed on Monday that it was in fact, the RCCL official who had approached it for help to get projects cleared. The channel has accused the government of getting the official to file the police complaint.

Incidentally, a criminal defamation notice issued on behalf of Yediyurappa’s younger son B Y Vijayendra to Power TV last week said the channel was targeting Vijayendra after he turned down a request by a channel official to transfer a deputy commissioner of police.

The sting was aired by Power TV amid a temporary injunction obtained from a senior civil judge by BJP worker C Nagaraja Gowda, prohibiting broadcast of “allegations against the Chief Minister of Karnataka, his family members and the BJP on the basis of false, fabricated and concocted stories”. The ex parte injunction was granted on September 2.

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