The National Company Law Tribunal (NCLT), on June 22, 2021, approved the resolution plan for the revival of Jet Airways (JAI, Mumbai International) under the new ownership of the Kalrock Capital-Murari Lal Jalan consortium.

The NCLT had until now only relayed its decision to the airline verbally. Jet Airways said in a stock market filing that it would disclose the details of the verdict as soon as it receives the written order.

CNBC-TV18 reported that the tribunal gave the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) and the Ministry of Civil Aviation (MoCA) 90 days from June 22 to award the slots needed for the airline's revival.

The authorities earlier maintained that the revived carrier would not automatically regain slots it had held prior to its April 2019 collapse as they had already been reallocated to other operators.

Even before the NCLT's final ruling, the airline's new owners had tentatively secured around 170 slot pairs at around 30 secondary airports in India excluding Mumbai International and Delhi International, Business Standard reported. The representatives had reportedly discussed the matter directly with the airports and received assurances that the slots would be available once Jet restarts.

"Due to the pandemic, the airports expect that airlines will operate reduced capacity for at least two years, which will make slots freely available. More slots will be available at Delhi after the new fourth runway is operational by early next year," an unnamed source said.

Although slots at secondary airports are important to Jet's still undisclosed business model, new investors have repeatedly underlined that access to Mumbai and Delhi was paramount to their plans.

Shortly before the conclusion of the NCLT hearings on June 18, 2021, the new investors said they would be open to accepting alternative slots at the two most congested gateways within 15 minutes from the original time. Jet is reportedly no longer arguing that it needs to regain the exact slots it had but only the right to slots, which seemingly opened a window of opportunity to negotiate with the regulator and convinced the NCLT that the resolution plan should be approved.

Jet Airways hopes to restart within six months of the NCLT's final order, using 25 narrowbody and five widebody aircraft. The carrier will opt for an entirely new fleet of leased rather than seek to retrieve the aircraft it had leased up to 2019 or use the ones it still owns.

According to the ch-aviation fleets ownership module, Jet Airways continues to own one A330-200, two B737-800s, one B737-900, and five B777-300(ER)s.

In a separate, albeit largely procedural development, the carrier's shareholders overwhelmingly rejected its financial reports for the last two fiscal years.

In yet another twist to the Jet saga, its resolution professional (the equivalent of bankruptcy administrator) filed an appeal to the NCLT to review transactions between the carrier and five parties, including its loyalty programme Jet Privilege and former minority shareholder Etihad Aviation Group, The Hindu BusinessLine has reported.

"The RP has made an appeal to the NCLT to investigate transactions related to the London Heathrow airports slots given to Etihad Airways (EY, Abu Dhabi International) which was Jet’s partner airline, and held a 24% stake. The appeal also includes a possible investigation on why Etihad did not support the airline financially at a time when it needed most," a source said.

The Emirati carrier refused to comment on the development.

Besides Etihad and Jet Privilege, the other three deals which the RP is seeking to review concern unspecified aircraft leases.