Air-India, the national carrier which is currently charting out its winter schedule, is expected to face a major shortage of cabin crew and pilots over the peak season.
The situation is expected to worsen with the airline inducting more aircraft on dry lease to service the lucrative India-US and the Gulf routes during winter- the season when the demand is at its peak.
While the exact shortage of pilots could not ascertained - though sources indicate it could be upwards of 50 in total - the shortfall of cabin-crew and air-hostesses is estimated to be around 500, sources close to the company said.
The crisis comes at a time when the airline is nearing the much awaited launch of its low cost or no-frills operations.
Rajeev Pratap Rudy, Union minister for civil aviation told Business Standard, "Air-India's concern at the moment is the major shortage of pilots and cabin crew for the coming winter. We would be working on a contingency plan to ensure undisrupted services." He, however, declined to divulge further details.
A-I recruited close to 30 pilots around 6 months back and almost 16 around two weeks back.