SpiceJet, a low-cost carrier, witnessed a significant decline in its shares, plunging by 17.31% to reach a low of Rs 23.21 on the Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE). This marked the sixth consecutive day of decline for SpiceJet shares, which have fallen by 22.90% during this period.
The decline in shares can be attributed to the recent dismissal of a plea by lessors against SpiceJet and Go First, another airline, seeking repossession of aircraft. The National Company Law Appellate Tribunal (NCLAT) ruled that the petitioners could approach the National Company Law Tribunal (NCLT) for relief instead. This decision was in line with expectations, as the appellate tribunal did not want to oppose the NCLT’s decision regarding an important case related to the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code (IBC) concerning an airline company.
On SpiceJet’s 18th anniversary, the airline announced a sale with one-way domestic fares starting at Rs 1,818. However, this did not prevent the continued decline in its shares. In a positive development, SpiceJet revealed plans to bring 25 of its grounded planes back into service, with four aircraft scheduled to return by June 15. Additional planes will gradually resume operations in the coming weeks.
SpiceJet also shared its plans to introduce several flights, including international UDAN flights on the Agartala-Chattogram-Agartala and Imphal-Mandalay-Imphal routes by the end of June. The airline intends to launch a new UDAN flight on the Kolkata-Tezpur-Kolkata route and restart Kolkata-Gwalior-Kolkata and Jammu-Gwalior-Jammu UDAN flights. Furthermore, SpiceJet will initiate flights on the Kolkata-Agartala-Kolkata and Kolkata-Imphal-Kolkata routes, along with resuming flights on the Kolkata-Chattogram-Kolkata route.
Meanwhile, Go First, headquartered in Mumbai, stirred the global aviation industry by filing for voluntary bankruptcy resolution with the NCLT on May 2. The company cited technical glitches with Pratt & Whitney’s next-generation engines, leading to operational challenges and mounting losses.
Several lessors worldwide have approached Indian courts, including NCLT, NCLAT, and the Delhi High Court, seeking the return of their aircraft assets. With the recent developments, it is expected that the ultimate legal battle will take place in the Supreme Court of India. Lawyers representing the affected leasing firms are likely to seek an urgent hearing from a vacation bench of the apex court.