Indian regulator suspends Kingfisher Airlines' licence to fly

Indian regulator suspends Kingfisher Airlines' licence to fly

Kingfisher Airlines' operating licence was suspended on Saturday after the Indian carrier failed to address the regulator's concerns about its operations.

Debt-ridden Kingfisher's fleet has been grounded since the start of the month when a staff protest against unpaid salaries turned violent.

The airline will only have its licence reinstated if it provides a plan that satisfies the aviation regulator, a government source told the Reuters news agency.

A complete cancellation of the licence was unlikely, added the source.

The licence suspension, until further notice, was announced by India’s civil aviation director general Arun Mishra.

The move had been widely expected after Kingfisher failed to respond properly to queries from the regulator regarding its ability to provide a "safe, efficient and reliable service".

The airline had said on Friday it expected to begin flying again on November 6 if the government approved its plan to resume operations.

Kingfisher said “the actual position is not changed because of this order”, though it will stop taking bookings for future flights.

“We have, in any case, always maintained that once the issues with the employees are resolved, we will first present our resumption plan for review, before resuming operations,” the carrier said.

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