Wuhan and IC 814 heroes among 61 pilots rested

NEW DELHI: Two pilots who have been in the news are among 61 senior crew members whose post-retirement contracts have been temporarily suspended by Air india earlier this week as part of savings measures to minimize the impact of the coronavirus pandemic that brutally hit the country, reports Saurabh Sinha.

The retirement age in Air india is 58, but many pilots beyond that age are re-hired on contract. Pilots can operate commercial flights till they turn 65.

The temporarily suspended pilots include Captain Devi Sharan and Captain S H Reza. Sharan had operated Indian Airlines flight IC 814 in December 1999 that was hijacked from Kathmandu on his way to New Delhi. Reza was one of four pilots who operated the first of two special jumbo jets dispatched on January 31 and February 1 to fly stranded Indians from the coronavirus access point in China. He had received a formal letter of thanks from the government for this.