Jet Airways has completed the proving flights it needs to secure the regulator’s approval to resume operations. The development comes days after the airline completed test flights earlier this month.
The Jalan-Kalrock consortium, owner of the airline, completed the required two sets of proving flights on Tuesday with 31 people on board, including officials of Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA).
The airline had conducted the first set of proving flights on Sunday with 18 people on board on the Delhi-Mumbai, Mumbai-Ahmedabad, Ahmedabad-Delhi routes using a Boeing 737 aircraft. The second set of flights was conducted using the same plane on the Delhi-Hyderabad and Hyderabad-Delhi routes.
With the proving flights done, Jet Airways is now awaiting grant of air operator’s certificate (AOC) by DGCA. “We have successfully conducted our proving flights over two days, and we now look forward to the grant of the AOC by the DGCA,” a statement from the Jalan-Kalrock consortium said.
Air operator’s certificate is an approval granted by a civil aviation regulator to an airline for using its aircraft for commercial purposes. The approval is granted after the airline has in place its personnel, aircraft, assets and systems to ensure the safety of its passengers and employees.
Jet Airways conducted its test flights on May 5 — its 29th anniversary — after being grounded for three years. The airlines had operated a test flight in Hyderabad, and a positioning ferry flight to Delhi thereafter.
Back then, Jet had assured that it will soon conduct proving flights to secure DGCA’s approval to resume commercial operations.
Jet Airways was grounded on April 17, 2019, after it failed to pay vendors due to bankruptcy under founder Naresh Goyal. The Jalan-Kalrock consortium had taken over the airline in October 2020 after placing the successful bid during the corporate insolvency resolution process from June 20, 2019 until June 22, 2021. Murari Lal Jalan is a Dubai-based NRI businessman and Kalrock Capital is a financial advisory and asset management company. The consortium is awaiting regulatory clearance to resume operations.
In March, aviation veteran Sanjiv Kapoor was appointed as the chief executive officer (CEO) of Jet Airways. Kapoor, who earlier served as the chief strategy and commercial officer at Vistara and the chief operating officer at SpiceJet, was scheduled to join Jet from April 4, 2022.
Before that, Sri Lankan Airlines chief executive Vipula Gunatilleka was appointed as the chief financial officer (CFO) of the Indian carrier. The New Delhi-based airline has invited job applications for the positions of crew, airport staff, engineers and technicians as it plans to relaunch operations later this year.
Since the airports had allocated the earlier slots of Jet Airways to other operators, the airline is still in discussions with the authorities, said the sources in the know. The airline wants to have a pan-India route network, initially with less frequency. The new management targets to start the operations by early next year.