A war room has been created at Jet Airways
to provide all the necessary documents and information to the lenders as efforts to revive the airline pick up pace almost two months after its temporary suspension, sources close to the development told CNBC-TV18.
The move is part of the outcome of the important meeting that took place with the Jet Airways officials
on Wednesday and was attended by a group of five people from Etihad Airways led by former Jet Airways CEO Cramer Ball, 5-6 representatives from Hinduja Group
, along with officials from the State Bank of India
“A lot of key issues were discussed. Legal and operations team have been asked to prepare statements on the critical human resource needed for recommencement of operations at the airline. Statements on pending payments to operational vendors have also been asked to be made,” one of the people aware of the development said.
Additionally, the lenders have also asked the debt-laden airline to prepare the list of vendors who would be able to help the airline resume operations and get the aircraft back into the skies, sources said.
“As of now, for the initial part, the stakeholders are looking at a fleet size of under 20…may be around 12-15,” another source said.
While the matter has picked up pace, especially after political stability at the centre, the interested parties are still worried about the ongoing investigation into alleged irregularities at the airline and are still seeking assurance from the government so that any investments, that they make into the airline, do not get affected and they “are not made to face the brunt of what happened at the airline in the past.”
"It is not a done deal yet but things are moving in the right direction. A firm decision is likely to be taken within the next couple of weeks,” another source said, adding that all possible efforts are being made to avoid the National Company Law Tribunal (NCLT) route. The airline is likely to need at least Rs 5,000 crore to restart operations, people in the know said.
Jet Airways, reeling under a debt of over Rs 8,000 crore, shut operations for a temporary but indefinite period on Apr 17. The airline’s promoters and ex-CEO Vinay Dube are currently under the radar of the ministry of corporate affairs as the department is investigating certain alleged irregularities at the company. Goyal and Dube have both been restricted from leaving the country.
Meanwhile, Mumbai bench of National Company Law Tribunal (NCLT) has adjourned the plea hearing petitions filed against Jet Airways by two of its suppliers, Shaman Wheels and Gaggar Enterprises, seeking bankruptcy proceedings against the airline.
The NCLT has requested Jet Airways representatives to be present for hearing on June 20, when bankruptcy court will decide whether to admit or reject the plea of operational creditors.
Last month, Jet Airways founder Naresh Goyal and his wife Anita Goyal
were stopped from leaving the country by immigration authorities at Mumbai airport minutes before their aircraft was about to take off for London via Dubai.
Naresh and Anita Goyal had resigned from the board of Jet Airways, which the former founded 26 years ago, in March following a debt restructuring plan. He had also resigned as the airline's chairman.