Go First: NCLT order on aircraft repossession likely on May 22
As Go First aircraft remain grounded, rivals Air India, IndiGo increase flights on busy routes
The National Company Law Appellate Tribunal (NCLAT) is set to deliver its verdict on Monday, May 22, regarding the petitions lodged by three aircraft lessors challenging Go First's voluntary insolvency resolution proceedings.
The two-member bench, led by Chairperson Justice Ashok Bhushan, concluded the hearing on the three petitions and subsequently reserved its order. The bench also instructed the involved parties to furnish any supplementary documentation within the following 48 hours.
The appellate tribunal was conducting hearings on several petitions submitted by SMBC Aviation Capital Ltd, GY Aviation, and SFV Aircraft Holdings. These three lessors are known to have leased approximately 21 aircraft to Go First.
In a related matter, multiple lessors have sought the intervention of the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) this month, aiming to deregister and reclaim possession of Go First's fleet of 45 planes. This move comes after Go First suspended its flight operations on May 3, resulting in mounting concerns within the aviation industry.
Meanwhile, following the financial difficulties faced by Go First Airlines, a race has ensued among Indian carriers to capitalise on the void left in the market. Air India and IndiGo have wasted no time and have swiftly ramped up their flight frequencies on various high-demand routes.
These strategic moves by the airlines indicate their intent to seize the opportunity presented by the cash-strapped Go First while aiming to cater to the increased passenger demand and ensure a smooth travel experience.
According to a report from the Economic Times, Air India has taken steps to address the demand on the Delhi-Srinagar and Delhi-Leh routes by introducing additional flights. Similarly, IndiGo Airlines has entered the fray by initiating flights connecting Mumbai with these two cities.
Vistara has responded by significantly increasing its flight frequency on the busy Delhi-Mumbai route. These strategic moves by the airlines indicate their proactive efforts to meet the needs of passengers and capitalise on the opportunities arising from the situation with Go First Airlines.
In light of the ongoing challenges Go First faces, the airline has extended the cancellation of its flights until May 23. This decision, attributed to "operational reasons," was conveyed through a statement shared by the airline. Go First expressed regret for any inconvenience caused to passengers due to these cancellations.