Kingfisher flights disrupted after HP stops fuel supply

At least six flights of Kingfisher Airlines were heavily delayed on Thursday as state-owned petroleum retailer Hindustan Petroleum Co Ltd (HP) stopped fuel supplies to the carrier as it had failed to clear a pending bill of about Rs100-130 crore.

According to CNBC-TV18 and other reports, the fuel supply has now been resumed after talks between the two sides that went on late into the evening, when Kingfisher offered to pay Rs10 crore immediately.

The oil company stopped supplies to Kingfisher around 5-5.30 pm, a peak time for air carriers. Kingfisher was forced to stop check-ins temporarily.

This is not the first time HPCL has stopped fuel supply to Vijay Mallya-promoted airline. On 18 July too, it had stopped fuel supply to the airline for a few hours after its dues touched Rs650 crore. Of this, Rs170 crore was not covered by any guarantee.

GMR, which operates the Delhi and Hyderabad airports, also threatened the airline that it would put it on a cash-and-carry system after dues touched Rs90 crore (Rs68 crore for Delhi and Rs22 crore for Hyderabad).

Kingfisher Airlines, the only listed airline to end 2010-11 with a loss of Rs 1,027 crore, recently announced it would discontinue its low-cost wing, Kingfisher Red.(See: Mallya dumps Kingfisher Red - exits low-cost operations)