ACG Aircraft Leasing, an Ireland-based lessor to the bankrupt airlines Go First, has demanded “robbed” or missing parts to be replaced by the latter. It has also asked the Delhi High Court to let it appoint round the clock security for its leased planes in a non-public court filing on 1 September.
The development comes weeks after ACG Aircraft Leasing had found critical parts, including fan blades and escape slides, missing from at least two of its four Airbus planes leased to Go First, according to Reuters.
Ever since it was granted bankruptcy protection by Indian courts, Go First has run into several disputes with its lessors. The recovery of more than 50 grounded Airbus planes has now been prohibited since bankruptcy froze its assets.
Lessors can currently only infrequently check out Go First’s aircrafts. According to court documents, Go responded that there were no court orders requiring them to give such paperwork when the lessor requested a "robbery list" from them on August 24.
According to court documents, ACG has requested permission from the Delhi judge to "contract 24 hour security for all its aircraft" and "to replace all components that were robbed from the aircraft”.
It is also seeking recovery of an engine it alleges Go First has installed in another lessor’s plane.
Go First’s lessors have unsuccessfully argued in Indian courts to get their planes back despite raising fears of theft of aircraft parts. Its lessors also include Standard Chartered's Pembroke Aircraft Leasing, SMBC Aviation and BOC Aviation.
The court is yet to pass an order on ACG’s plea, and the case will next be heard on September 13.
Planes are “akin to perishable goods” and if they are not preserved properly, “they disintegrate at a rapid pace, causing huge irreparable loss,” ACG’s 140-page filing states.
Go First previously stated that it intended to restart operations and raise investor capital, but such plans have not materialised.
The second-largest aircraft lessor in the world, SMBC, cautioned that India's decision to forbid leasing companies from recovering jets from Go First will shock the market and cause a crisis of confidence.