On November 15, Vijay Mallya, the chairman of Kingfisher Airlines tried to put up a brave face, saying that he had come up with a plan to turn around his troubled airline, reeling under heavy debt and interest payments.
Could his plan be too little and perhaps too late?
Mallya says he doesn't want a bailout and is only seeking more working capital to tide over a crisis that has its origins in higher oil prices, high interest costs and rupee depreciation.
Meanwhile, he's trying to extract Rs 1,000 crore lying with lessors as security if banks agree to offer him letters of credit.
This can help the airline cut interest burden by repaying some high-cost rupee loans.
This crisis-ridden airline has also sought government permission to directly import fuel, and is withdrawing from loss-making routes as part of its plans to reconfigure the aircraft.
And, of course, it is discarding its low-fare service, Kingfisher Red, and will fly only as a full-service airline for higher yields.
Mallya is also willing to divest his stake and rope in a partner.
These could be the equivalent of putting out a raging brushfire with a wet towel, and experts say is yet another indication of how inept a thinker Mallya is, about the airline business.
"It is an unbelievable act of incompetence to wait until vendors cut off your credit forcing you to cancel flights before you address the problem in your airline. It is a big joke and unfortunately those who will suffer the most are Kingfisher's employees who will be the real victims of an incompetent boss and his gang of "yes" men," says an airline expert.