Creditors continue to thwart the relaunch plans of Jet Airways (JAI, Mumbai International), now demanding that the consortium attempting to finalise its acquisition of the airline produce an air operator's certificate (AOC).

Appearing before India's National Company Law Appellate Tribunal (NCLAT) on November 22, counsel for the committee of creditors (CoC) requested the Jalan Kalrock Consortium (JKC) to present an AOC at the next hearing.

Jet Airways' AOC expired in May 2023. The Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) later issued an interim AOC valid for one month to help it solve some corporate resolution issues. However, the interim AOC expired in early September.

Counsel for the CoC accused the consortium of taking them and the court "for a ride" and producing an AOC would help prove that JKC is serious about relaunching Jet Airways. The committee has proved to be a thorn in the side of the consortium. Initially supporting the acquisition of the airline and a financial settlement package after Jet Airways ceased operations in 2019, relations between the two parties have significantly deteriorated.

In mid-2022, the NCLT approved a resolution plan, again with the support of the CoC, that would see ownership of Jet Airways transfer to the consortium. However, since then, the committee has launched a series of legal challenges to the ownership transfer while JKC has missed a series of payment deadlines.

In recent months, the consortium paid the full INR3.5 billion rupees (USD42 million) to settle creditor and lender claims per the mid-2022 NCLT plan. In response, the CoC questioned the source of some of the funds, leading the JKC to question the lenders' intent to transfer ownership.

Over the last week, the bankruptcy court has appeared keen to draw a line under the saga, ordering both parties to return on December 11, saying no further delays would be tolerated.