Aviation News

Delhi HC raps SpiceJet on delay in payment, says return the engines, ET Infra


Coming down heavily on SpiceJet, the Delhi High Court on Tuesday asked the low-cost carrier to pay its lessors Team France and Sunbird France a sum of $450,000 by January 3.

The court also asked the airline to file an affidavit within a week settling the manner in which it intends to liquidate the balance outstanding dues of $12.9 million. SpiceJet has been asked to clarify its intentions related to the redelivery of the engine.

During the hearing, Justice Rekha Palli observed that SpiceJet was compelling the court to pass adverse orders restraining them from using the engines. “My indulgence has limits. Make a commitment today. Someone’s engine you are enjoying for years and you are not paying them. If you are unable to pay, then return their engines.”

SpiceJet was offering to pay 2 percent ($50,000 by December 21 and another $200,000 by December 29) of the total amount by December 29, but the judge asked it not to make “mockery” and directed it to pay $4,50,000.

Justice Palli has directed the airline to pay $50,000 on or before December 23, and a sum of $200,000 by December 29. It has also been asked to pay $200,000 by January 3.

While SpiceJet did not dispute the liability to pay the amount to the lessors, Senior Counsel Sandeep Sethi said the amount demanded by the lessor needs to be reconciled. The lessors, however, told the court that SpiceJet’s claim is not bonafide as similar promises were made in the past.

The lessors also told the judge that they had received some of the engines in damaged condition.

“You can cancel your flights, I can’t help. People should know that the carrier can’t pay. You can take some other person for a ride for the time being,” the judge observed during the hearing.

Through counsel Anandh Venketaramani, the lessors also argued that SpiceJet has given a public statement that it will bid for a takeover of Go First, which is currently undergoing insolvency proceedings currently.

  • Published On Dec 19, 2023 at 05:45 PM IST

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