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Air India CMD says crew being given PPE, but says nothing about quality

The Air India CMD has, however, not mentioned anything about the quality of PPE being offered to cabin crew involved in these high-risk ops
New Delhi: Air India CMD (Chairman and Managing Director) Rajiv Bansal said on Thursday that all essential items like sanitizers and PPE (personal protection equipment) are being provided to the cabin crew and staff who are engaged in flight operations in the midst of Coronavirus pandemic. The statement comes days after the ICPA (Indian Commercial Pilots Association) wrote a letter to Union Civil Aviation Minister Hardeep Singh Puri, alleging that Air India crew ferrying essential supplies and carrying out rescue operations during the Coronavirus pandemic were being given “sub-standard and flimsy” PPE. “We are providing all the essentials things like sanitizers, gloves, personal protective equipment to the cockpit crew, cabin crew and the ground staff. Our cabin crew has been advised to quarantine themselves after flights,” the Air India CMD said.

Air India getting more PPE from Hong Kong and Shanghai: Bansal

Bansal also said that Air India is going to get more PPE kits from Hong Kong and Shanghai. “Approval has been received for Apr 4-5th April to operate a cargo flight from Delhi to Hong Kong to bring back medical equipment (especially PPE). For cargo movement to Shanghai from Apr 6, permission is awaited,” said Bansal. The ICPA had alleged that the Air India crew that had been on the frontlines of the relief operations during Coronavirus pandemic was being sent on flights with “sub-standard and flimsy” PPE, insufficient sanitizers and that below-standard disinfection procedures were being followed on flights involved in these operations, putting employees at risk. Even though the Air India CMD has commented on the matter, he has not mentioned anything in his statement on the quality of PPE being offered to cabin crew involved in these high-risk operations.

Air India will operate 18 flights for foreigners stranded in India: CMD

Separately, the CMD also said, “AI will operate 18 flights for citizens of Germany, Canada, France, Ireland stranded in India, on request of the concerned embassies. AI has entered into commercial contracts with these countries to run charter flights for their citizens. Flights will return to India empty.”