India's cash-strapped Kingfisher Airlines declared a "partial lock-out" on Monday, suspending flights for three days following alleged criminal intimidation and violence by striking employees.
"It has been decided that flight operations will be suspended for the next three days, ie. until October 4," the statement from spokesman Prakash Mirpuri said.
He cited "a series of protracted and unabated incidents of violence, criminal intimidation, assault, wrongful restraint and other illegal acts including refraining from attending work" by a small sector of workers.
"The management has been forced to declare a partial lock-out at the airline, effective immediately," Mirpuri added.
Kingfisher, which is desperately in need of capital to keep flying, earlier said it had cancelled flights on Monday because of problems with staff, who have not been paid for months. The news sent shares plunging.
Mirpuri's statement late on Monday said a small sector of "recalcitrant employees" had "regrettably chosen to take law into their own hands, forcing a complete paralysis of operations".
Their actions had prevented the majority from working, the statement said, adding that the airline would try to engage with such workers before commencing legal action.
Earlier R.K. Khanna, deputy director-general of India's civil aviation regulator, said they had summoned the carrier's chief executive Sanjay Agarwal to discuss the problems on Tuesday.
"The airline will have to explain how long the cancellations will continue," he told AFP.