Delhi HC decides only erstwhile AI pilots to fly Boeing 777 planes

Boeing 777 plane

Air India Ltd. can go ahead with its plan of allowing only erstwhile Air India pilots to fly the advanced Boeing 777 planes , the Delhi High court ruled on Monday while dismissing a plea by the Indian Commercial Pilots Association (ICPA).

Earlier, the ICPA challenged Air India’s decision to provide Boeing 777 training only to the erstwhile Air India pilots. However, Justice Rajiv Shakdher, the hon’ble judge hearing the case, dismissed their plea citing that AI’s decision does not violate any existing law. The court also added that the judiciary’s intervention was likely to make the issue even more complicated.

The court also added that the policy made by Air India Ltd. (formed after the merger of Air India and Indian Airlines in 2007)  to train only the co-pilots of former Air India for commanding Boeing 777 aircrafts will not have any effect on the terms and conditions of service  that apply to members of ICPA.


The court further said that the airline should be allowed to run by the management of Air India Ltd. in whichever way they think will serve their cause the best. Any decision made by the court in the matter will complicate issues. The court also confirmed that the Implementation Committee is already examining the Dharmadhikari Committee Report and trying to put the best method forward.

It is worth mentioning that the Dharmadhikari panel is dealing with integration of employees of unified Air India, including the pilots, cabin crews and engineers.

The ICPA had also stated that the erstwhile Indian Airlines Pilots should not face discrimination of any form regarding the operation of the assets of the two companies, including their fleet of aircrafts after the union of the two entities.