After Tata Group Acquired Air India, 1600 Employees Chose Voluntary Retirement: Find Out Why?
The former state-owned and now a Tata Group owned airline company Air India had rolled out a voluntary retirement scheme on June 1, for employees older than 55 years of age and with a continuous employment of 20 years.
However, later the company’s owner Tata Group modified this scheme and allowed applications for VRS from those over the age of 40 and from different branches including cabin crew, clerical and unskilled categories.
According to a news source, over 1,600 employees of Air India have already applied for the voluntary retirement scheme, meaning 22% of the airline’s permanent staff at around 7,000 headcount.
Air India’s total employee headcount stands at around 10,800, including the ones on contractual terms.
22% Air India’s Employees Opt for VRS
The national carrier Air India is no longer a government company but now a Tata Group-held company, and the latter has been making swift and significant changes within the airline, including fleet restructuring and management reshuffling.
“Most of those who are opting for VRS have around two to three years of their service period left. Functions of multiple departments like security driver or loader where Air India under the government had hired permanent staff are going to be outsourced. So, it is a good proposition for them,” said an Air India executive, as cited by a report.
Air India is already planning to hire cabin crew between the ages of 18 and 32 years, while it prepares for expanding. Further, cabin crew, peons, clerical assistants, housekeeping staff and security guards are among employees opting for VRS.
Almost 2,800 employees are eligible to take VRS and those opting for it comprise about 57%, stated the report.
However, not everyone is happy with this scheme. According to George Abraham, a member of the Aviation Industry Employees Guild, “The VRS scheme is a tactic to break the resistance of employees who are opposing eviction from staff quarters. We were assured that there would be job protection for one year after disinvestment.”