Financially-stressed Jet Airways has time till Tuesday afternoon to pay fuel vendors failing which it might have to ground its operational fleet, industry sources said on Monday.
According to industry insiders, the company is almost out of funds and is relying solely on the scant funds being infused by lenders on an expense-to-expense basis.
"The fuel supply is expected to run out from Tuesday afternoon as fresh payments would be required for vendors," an industry source told IANS in New Delhi.
Corroborating this, a Jet Airways official told IANS in New Delhi: "A proposal for a fresh fund infusion has been given to the lenders."
At present, Jet is operating only 7 aircraft for domestic operations due to the grounding of over 80 per cent of its fleet by lessors owing to non-payment of dues.
The full service carrier's situation is critical as the airline, that once operated around 120 aircraft, is now left with just 16 planes in its fleet.
Currently, the airline owes over Rs 8,000 crore to a consortium of lenders led by the state-run State Bank of India (SBI). Jet has suspended international operations till Monday afternoon.
The only hope for the airline now lies in an immediate dose of interim funding and the completion of the stake sale process initiated by the lenders.
The airline on Sunday said it has extended the cancellation of its west-bound flights -- to and from Amsterdam, London and Paris -- until April 16.
On Sunday, Jet's pilots' union deferred its decision of "no pay no work" from Monday, citing the meeting of the lenders' consortium with the airline management slated for later in the day.
A senior member of the National Aviators' Guild (NAG) had said that the pilots would await the outcome of Monday's meeting.
(Rohit Vaid can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org)