DUBAI // A strike by pilots of Air India has forced the airline to cancel 60 per cent of its scheduled flights from the UAE.
Hundreds of passengers who had booked flights with the airline will now be placed with other airlines or onto Air India Express.
The strike is now in its fifth day, and Air India has stopped taking bookings for the next three days in the Middle East and Africa.
Staff at Air India's Dubai office said disruption to customers was minimised with alternative flights.
Abhay Patak, the company's Dubai-based manager, said: "People who have booked with us and have had their flights cancelled will be placed on alternative flights so that they can continue their journeys."
"We have placed passengers who have been inconvenienced by the ongoing dispute on other airlines or onto our Air India Express budget service," Mr Patak said.
"We have been in a much better position today because of the arrangements we have made to charter extra planes and use larger capacity planes."
Mr Patak would not say how many flights were cancelled yesterday and would not comment on what might happen today, but he said that Air India was continually monitoring the situation.
However, media reports in India said 125 flights had been affected across Air India's domestic and international network.
The strike involves 600 pilots and is now in its fifth day. It was sparked by a pay dispute with members of the Indian Commercial Pilots Association.
The pilots who are striking are former employees of the original India Airlines, which merged with Air India in 2007.
They are demanding pay parity with their colleagues at Air India who they say earn more.
Management at Air India say that the strike is illegal because it is subject to an ongoing tribunal.
The Indian government has appointed a senior judge to look into how the merger can be more smoothly implemented.