Air India pilots’ strike enters eighth day; 221 flights cancelled

NEW DELHI: As many as 221 Air India flights on the domestic operations were cancelled on Wednesday, as the strike by nearly half of the carrier’s 1,600 pilots entered the eighth day on Wednesday, with operations restricted to the trunk routes between metros.But the Air India management said some 100-odd flights of sister budget carrier Alliance Air had been deployed to ferry passengers as no reconciliation was in sight between the management and the striking pilots, co-opted from the erstwhile Indian Airlines.”The decision to operate only four fights, that too on the metro routes, was taken after a new operations plan which came into effect today (Wednesday),” a senior official from the airline told IANS over phone from the carrier’s headquarters in Mumbai.”But these four flights, along with those of Alliance Air, are sufficient today, since bookings had been closed five days ago. So there is no backlog. We will take a decision on when to re-open bookings later in the day,” the official said. – TOI