Air India has been put on 'cash-and-carry mode' by Mumbai Airport authorities after its due cleared of Rs. 450 crore. Today airline said it has paid about Rs. 40 crore and certain outstandings were yet to be reconciled.
Mumbai International Airport Limited (MIAL), which was led by the GVK, which runs the city airport and yesterday communicated its decision to the Air India management, MIAL sources said, adding that the airline has been "put on cash-and-carry mode as it has failed to clear the dues in the required time".
They are asked instead to pay cash on a daily basis for availing the facilities instead of, airlines use airport services on credit but when the dues mount.
The dues relate to various airport charges such as landing, navigation, parking and other services, which an airline has to pay to the airport operator.
"As of now their cumulative dues stand at Rs. 450 crore," said by the national carrier, has been told to pay at least Rs. 200 crore by June if it wanted to be taken off from the cash-and-carry mode.
However, senior Air India officials told PTI that the airline had paid Rs. 650 crore to GMR-led Delhi International Airport Limited (DIAL) and over Rs. 100 crore to MIAL in 2013-14 to clear its backlog. On top of this, about Rs. 40 crore was paid to MIAL yesterday.
"yet to be reconciled since they have charged us interest on certain outstanding heads, which is not acceptable to Air India," they said, adding that dues to MIAL and DIAL
Air India's flight operations out of Mumbai would not be affected, the officials said.
Observing that payment of old outstandings were linked to equity infusion by the government, they said escrow accounts for both DIAL and MIAL have been created to pay dues relating to user development fee, development fee and passenger service fee which were collected and remitted on a monthly basis.
Moreover, the airline officials said that payments were also being made for parking space and landing, parking charges every month.
They added that MIAL also owed Air India "sums of money" on account of hangars and some facilities which have not yet been constructed or their construction completed and added that these amounts would be set off against the dues owed to MIAL.
However, MIAL's move comes at a time when the national carrier is in the process of joining Star Alliance.
A DIAL spokesperson said, "DIAL has not initiated any such action against Air India as of now."