The employees of Pawan Hans Helicopters Limited are strongly opposing the announcement of privatisation of this public sector enterprise. Through a letter to the Prime Minister dated 5 February 2017, the All India Aviation Employees Union has expressed its opposition to the company being made a private company.
The government recently took the decision to sell Pawan Hans Helicopters Limited. In the second week of January 2017, the government floated a tender for capitalists to bid for the transfer all of its 51% stake in the company. In this joint stock company, ONGC has 49% stake. The Cabinet of Ministers of the BJP led coalition government and the Niti Ayog have already given their recommendation to sell 100% of the company through a strategic sale.
It is worth noting that Pawan Hans Helicopters Limited is a public sector aviation transport company. It is the largest helicopter service providing company in Asia. The main purpose of establishing this company was to provide transport services to remote areas, hills and to oil exploration rigs, along with providing charter services. Pawan Hans has been providing air transport to government, private companies, politicians, pilgrims, for connecting hard to reach places, for search and rescue operations, etc. It helps in running the Aircraft Engineers Training Institute, along with providing helicopter flight and maintenance services to Border Security Force and HAL. The more than 1000 employees in Pawan Hans Helicopters Limited – aircraft engineers, flight engineers, pilots, technical and subordinate personnel have contributed to ever rising income of the government. The company was established in 1985 with only two helicopters. Today it has a fleet of more than 43 modern helicopters.
Workers all over India are struggling against handing over of public sector enterprises established with people’s money to Indian and foreign capitalists. CGPI opposes the privatisation of Pawan Hans Helicopters Limited and supports the struggles of the workers against privatisation.