Lenders discussing ways to revive Jet Airways; fund infusion likely soon

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Sources in the know told India Today that the lenders are unlikely to extend any interim funding as of now - they want to weigh the seriousness of bids received for the recently-concluded stake sale before firming up any funding plans.

The airline, which has been expecting Rs 1,500 crore interim funding from lenders, has failed to get that despite several meetings.

Union Minister Suresh Prabhu Tuesday directed the Ministry of Civil Aviation to review matters related to debt-ridden Jet Airways including issues around increased fares, flight cancellations and passenger rights and safety. Some of the airlines are also in discussions with lessors to take deregistered aircraft of Jet Airways. Jet has no funds to pay for its operational costs and has suspended all global flights and has a mere 7 planes are now flying out of its earlier fleet of 119.

Jet Airways' shares crashed this morning amid reports that its board has proposed a total operational shutdown.

India's aviation secretary told media late on Tuesday that Jet had only five aircraft flying on the day and that 90 percent of its slots stood vacant.

Shares of Jet Airways plunged almost 19 per cent on Tuesday amid reports that the company is likely to temporarily shut down its operations. The carrier said it was awaiting "emergency liquidity support" from its lenders.

A year ago Jet had more than 120 planes operating, but the full-service airline has been hit by competition from low-priced carriers such as IndiGo and SpiceJet, along with high oil prices, fuel taxes and a weak rupee. Left with no cash, a seven-plane fleet and fuel to run operations only till Tuesday afternoon, the end is imminent, said sources close to the development.

Jet Airways has a debt burden of more than Rs 8,000 crore.

In his message to employees, Dube said the airline has been working with lenders to secure interim funding for its operations.

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