Friday, June 2, 2023

Justice Pratibha Singh of Delhi HC recuses from hearing pleas by aircraft lessors leasing out their planes to Go First airlines

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Delhi High Court judge, Justice Prathiba M. Singh, on Thursday recused herself from hearing a batch of petitions filed by aircraft lessors, who had leased out their planes to Go First airlines, which was currently under insolvency.

The judge ordered that the matters be listed before another bench on Friday, subject to orders of the Chief Justice.

The petitioners in the matter included Pembroke Aircraft Leasing 11, SMBC Aviation Capital, Accipiter Investments Aircraft 2 and Eos Aviation 12 (Ireland), who have sought deregistration of their aircraft, which were with Go First.

Earlier in May, Go First had moved the National Company Law Tribunal (NCLT) to initiate the corporate insolvency resolution process under the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code (IBC).

As per the airlines, due to faulty engines supplied by American company Pratt & Whitney (P&W), the grounding of its aircraft increased from 31 percent in 2020 to more than 50 percent in April 2023. Go First had claimed that the company suffered a loss of over Rs 10,800 crore.

On May 10, the NCLT Delhi had admitted the airlines’ plea and declared full moratorium for the company.

The Tribunal had further directed the company’s suspended board of directors to co-operate with the IRP to ensure that there were no layoffs.

The decision of NCLT was upheld by the National Company Law Appellate Tribunal (NCLAT) on May 22.

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