New Delhi: The UPA government is becoming too sensitive to criticism. Facing heat from various quarters for mismanagement of Air India, the government’s forced the national carrier’s top official to quit for his ‘mild’ remarks.

Air India's Chief Operating Officer Capt Gustav Baldauf put in his papers on Monday, after being issued a show cause notice over his reported remarks about political interference in the airline's daily affairs.

Baldauf, who was served the notice resigned on Monday morning, an airline spokesperson said.

The Austrian national, who earlier worked in senior capacities in several airlines including Jet Airways and Austrian Airlines, was asked to explain his statements that it was a difficult environment to work as the government played "too prominent a role in the (airline's) operations".

"When you call someone from outside, let him work. The government should control but let him work. It should not be involved in day-to-day operations", Baldauf was quoted as saying.

Following the remarks which the airline had taken seriously, he had a meeting with Civil Aviation Minister Vayalar Ravi where the issue was understood to have figured.

Baldauf had also expressed his displeasure at the removal of Capt Pawan Arora as the COO of Air India Express, saying it would affect the turnaround plan of the ailing national carrier.

After Baldauf's appointment last April, the Air India Board had appointed Arora and Stefan Sukumar as the Chief Training Officer on a hefty pay package. Sukumar resigned recently after the Directorate General of Civil Aviation had raised objections to the status of license as CTO.

Baldauf was appointed at an annual salary package of Rs 3 crore with the mandate to implement Air India's turnaround plan.


(Agencies)