Committee headed by Justice Dharmadhikari submitted Report on Air India Merger
India Current Years 2012. Four-member committee headed by Justice D. M. Dharmadhikari submitted report on Air India and Indian Airlines merger to Civil Aviation Minister
Four-member committee on integration of thousands of employees after the merger of two State-owned carriers — Air India and Indian Airlines submitted his report to the Civil Aviation Minister, Ajit Singh on 31 January 2012. The committee was headed by former Supreme Court judge Justice D. M. Dharmadhikari.
The Committee also included Prof Ravindra H Dholakia of IIM Ahmedabad, Rajeshwar Dayal, expert on public sector employees’ service matters and senior Civil Aviation Ministry official Syed Nasir Ali, as its members.
The Committee tried to bring the wage structure of the merged organisation strictly under legal parameters, so that it conformed with the guidelines of the Department of Public Enterprises, which caters to other public sector undertakings.
The panel prepared the report after interacting with all stakeholders, including various unions and associations of both former companies and their management.
The report presented covered all the views of the pilots, cabin crew and engineers on integration of about 29000 employees of Indian Airlines and Air India which merged following the Government of India’s approval on the merger received on 1 May 2007.
The Dharmadhikari Committee made several recommendations on critical issues such as career progression, integration across various cadre, rationalisation of their pay scale, allowances and incentives and overall restructuring of the entire staff of the erstwhile Indian Airlines and Air India.
Issues that rose after the merger
As on 31 December 2011, the total staff strength of Air India, which was merged in March 2007, stood at 28500. Cash-strapped Air India which has 14 unions representing all sections of its employees suffered three strikes since its merger, including two by its pilots.
The employees ever since the merger in 2007 have been agitating over disparities in their pay scales, promotional avenues and areas of responsibilities.
The thorny issues rose during these agitations included pay parity and career progression between the staffers of the two erstwhile carriers. Delayed payments of salaries and allowances were also critical issues which created unrest among the employees.