November 14th, 2011
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Kingfisher crisis: Board meeting to be held today

Kingfisher crisis New Delhi: The Kingfisher board would probably hold meeting today discuss ways to pull themselves up from the debt that is sucking them in as quick sand. The board is to explore ways out of the financial quagmire. According to reports, the board is likely to look at options of selling property, converting loans from its parent company into equity, and changing the terms under which it leases aircraft.

The airline has cancelled 200 flights in the past one week. The meeting has been called even as the government remains non-committal on the issue of allowing direct investment by foreign airlines in the aviation sector.

Meanwhile, the opposition parties – the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and the Left – remain opposed to any government bailout package to help the cash-strapped airline. Even business leaders appeared not to be in support for a bailout for Kingfisher. Rahul Bajaj, the outspoken chief of Bajaj Auto, spoke on the crisis at the India Economic Summit in Mumbai.

He said, “If Bajaj Auto gets into a mess, would you bail me out? If it’s a free market economy, those who die, must die.” Reacting to the opposition, Kingfisher chairman Vijay Mallya lashed out at those calling the need for financial aid a ‘bailout’.

He posted a tweet saying, “Why do you say bail out? There’s no bail out involving tax payers money. We want working capital management assistance.” Referring to the statement of Prime Minister Manmohan Singh that he would explore ways to help the cash-strapped airline, Mallya said that Singh understood the importance of the issue.

He posted another tweet saying, “The Hon’ble PM is an economist and understands the importance of connectivity that goes together with economic growth. Why such debate then?” The Prime Minister had said that his government would find ways to help the ailing aviation industry.



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