India, May 9 -- Tata Group-owned Air India Express has sacked some of the crew members, who went on mass "sick leave" on Wednesday in protest against the management over the merger of the low-cost domestic service with AirAsia India, calling the abstention "pre-meditated and concerted" without "any justifiable reason". The protest led to the cancellation of at least 86 flights and curtailment of operations.

People aware of the matter said the termination letters were issued late on Wednesday. It was immediately unclear how many employees were terminated.

A termination letter said, "It has been reported that you were rostered for a flight on 07.05.2024. However, you informed the Scheduling team at the last moment that you were unwell and...