2 Air India pilots on hunger strike serious
Two striking Air India pilots were in serious state yesterday as their physical condition worsened on the fourth day of their indefinite fast demanding withdrawal of sacking orders against 101 pilots and recognition of Indian Pilots' Guild (IPG).
Identified as Captain Tejvir and Captain Hari Shankar, the duo are among 15 pilots who are on indefinite hunger strike at Jantar Mantar. The Air India management had sent a team of doctors to examine them yesterday afternoon. “The doctors were of the opinion that both of them be hospitalised,” said Tauseef Mukadam, joint secretary, IPG. The duo, however, refused to get admitted in the hospital and said they would continue the agitation from the venue, Mukadam added.
Fearing that the Air India management could force-feed pilots, the IPG has engaged a team of doctors from Ganga Ram Hospital to monitor their condition. When asked what if their condition deteriorates further, Mukadam said, “It’s a conscious decision taken by everybody. We have not forced anybody to join us. We will fight till the time our demands are accepted.” The on-going pilots’ strike is the longest ever in the country. Following the stalemate, the national carrier has suffered a loss of over Rs 550 crore.