Air India lays off over 180 staff; says affected couldn't utilize VRS, reskilling opportunities

The airliner has been making efforts to streamline its business model


Air India has laid off more than 180 non-flying staff in recent weeks, sources said while the airline maintained that the affected people were not able to utilise the voluntary retirement schemes and reskilling opportunities.

The loss-making Air India was taken over by the Tata Group in January 2022 and since then, efforts are being made to streamline the business model.

An Air India spokesperson on Friday said that as part of the fitment process, employees in non-flying functions have been assigned roles based on organisational needs and individual merit.

"A comprehensive process has been followed to assess the suitability of all employees over the past 18 months. During this phase, there have also been multiple voluntary retirement schemes and reskilling opportunities offered to employees.

"However, for less than 1 per cent of our employee base who have not been able to utilise VRS or reskilling opportunities, we have to part ways. We are honouring all contractual obligations during this process," the spokesperson said in a statement.

While the airline did not mention the exact number of staff who have been laid off, the sources said it was a little over 180 legacy employees.

Air India has around 18,000 employees.

Two rounds of VRS were offered since the takeover by the Tata Group.

As part of the multi-year transformational initiative Vihaan.AI, the spokesperson said one key aspect is to build an agile and effective organisational structure in line with the business model to support expansion and ambition, the spokesperson added.


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