Jet Airways has been forced to ground a further 15 aircraft for defaulting on lease payments, just over a week after it indicated that it would receive a funding lifeline from lenders that would allow it to return some jets to service.
The carrier disclosed the additional groundings in a stock exchange statement. It now has 70 aircraft out of operation owing to “non-payment to lessors”.
It has not clarified which types have been grounded, but it appears that they have mostly affected its Boeing 737 fleet.
Cirium’s Fleets Analyzer indicates that there are only 62 aircraft in service with the airline, and around 72 jets in storage. Those likely include some that have yet to be delivered to the carrier, some in maintenance and others stored for operational reasons.
Jet’s latest grounding statement comes after the airline said on 25 March that its consortium of lenders, led by the State Bank of India, would provide it a Rs15 billion ($218 million) interim funding facility that would be used to clear some debts owed to lessors, employees and some vendors. That appeared to be an effort to return some of its grounded jets to service and avert further groundings, but does not appear to have progressed the situation.