American School of Aviation — Story from the other side.


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One of the ex-student has reacted sharply on the one track media reports and comments from various individuals and stranded students of American School of Aviation. Vishwas Gaikwad’s comments cannot be ignored so we’ve decided to put his side of story in this post.

Vishwas Gaikwad wrote on 3rd July 2008

I cannot comment on the business practices of the school but being a student there for one year I can’t accept media persons questioning the quality of training we underwent there. The school has been really strict with the training, stage checks and check-rides. Many of us failed check-rides and stage checks and ended up flying more than double the time required to complete a particular course (like Private, Instrument) in order to gain required proficiency. There has been no case of any pilot over-logging the flight time. Don’t you think if that was the case we all could have finished the training in 10months? In your effort to bring down the management you people are making it worse for innocent students who trained there. Even I have lost a lot of money and appreciate the help we are getting from all sources but please do not make any ugly assumptions regarding our training.
I have a sincere request to Naik sisters, I understand whatever you went through is bad enough (and we all are also going through that right now). But please do not tell lies to the media regarding the training. You two never trained here. And those among the media who are doubtful about the training practices are welcome to talk to any of the students (even the dissatisfied students who left the training midway to join other schools will agree with me). I am more than eager to prove my ability as a pilot to any qualified examiner anywhere, anytime but I will not tolerate these wrong allegations against my flying experience. If any of the former ASA students is reading this I will appreciate your support in this matter.
I expect the editor of above article to correct the contents of the first paragraph and apologize to the students.

SecondCity’s Response

An apology in advance is hidden in the particular paragraph Vishwas has mentioned in his upper comments. It is for the reader to find out. Still there are large amount of complaints regarding the training time given to the students and these complaints are not baseless claims made by bunch of few students but large majority of students are claiming the same thing. As far as question of ability to fly a plane as an ASA passed out than it is for the DGCA to decide about it. They are keeping a close eye on all the events at ASA. I wish if some other students can come out to support the claims made by Vishwas.

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33 thoughts on “American School of Aviation — Story from the other side.

  1. I applaud the candor of Vishwas, and the fact that he stood up for his school. While everyone gets angry at the management, it’s easy to berate everything else. The hard part it seems now is finding a school with the good management and flight training (and schools like mine sadly are not common in this economy).

    Thumbs up again to Vishwas to his words.

  2. I believe there as been a huge misunderstanding on your part. The complaints from students are regarding the slow progress of training and not about over-logging of flight time. You can count on me to have the same complaint. I was here 1 year and started my flying after 4 months, in next 8 months I was able to get my private pilot license and do some time building taking my flight time to about 110hrs.
    You should be careful when you use the word “training time” as it can take an altogether different meaning in aviation.
    I knew well that if I leave the school midway to join other school I won’t get a single cent back so I decided to be patient and stick with the school till it was running. I didn’t had any other option, the training was slow but it was up to the standards. Those who had extra money, had the luxury to switch schools.
    And all pilots with a commercial license are same in the eyes of FAA or DGCA, it doesn’t bother them if Mr. A took 2years and 300hrs to get his license and Mr. B took 4months and 200hrs to get his. If I were you I would be more suspicious of Mr. B.

    And thanks for your kind concern regarding MY future as an aviator, but I don’t need a blogger’s sympathy to fly safe, I can rely on my training for that :)

  3. See what Mr.Vishwas Gaikwad has writen in the orkut community. Since he didn’t get any response now he is begging for that. If he thinks he is RIGHT then I think he should not beg for response because now after begging I am sure there will be many who will come forward and give him alms of votes. & one more thing if he thinks that this website is a Low – Life Blogger , then why the hell is he using this site ?

    2 6:09 pm (2½ hours ago) Vishwas
    Respect your flying abilities?? support me
    Some low-life blogger is trying to suggest that over-logging was going on in ASA.
    As much as I hate the people responsible for our plight, I have immense confidence in the training that we all underwent there.
    please go this link

    https://2ndcity.wordpress.com/2008/07/04/american-school-of-aviation-story-from-the-other-side/

    the sucker has replied to my comment with- “I wish if some other students can come out to support the claims made by Vishwas.”

    Please go and read the article in the above link and check what “claims” I’ve made, if you feel that I am being honest with my observation then please leave a line in the comment section (along with your name) and let him know that I am not bullshitting.

  4. I totally agree with Vishwas..The management gave us hell…but our instructors were amazing…i really enjoyed my flying experience in the school…I cant say the same about the management though..

  5. i totally agree with vishy. ive completed my training frm ASA. i have no doubt to say the quality of training were at par with best.since im back home in india. ive been meeting students frm other flying schools frm US,PHILLIPINES etc. i feel my training was a zillion times better than there training. i was very much depressed frustrated during my training out there in ASA due to prolonged time it took. but the quality was at par with the best.so thers a huge mistake being made doubting the quality. but i wasnt sure abt the management though.

  6. Yes, As a student of ASA I cant honestly say that their standards were high. Even for the first stage of my private pilot’s licence training I failed the stage check twice (not exactly proud of it) and I have proof of it..

    It was the inability of the management’s to run a business or their greediness which led to this situation.

    Now that I am looking at other schools for admission, after realising the quality of training elsewhere and the abilities of students in other schools, I realise that ASA’s quality was at least 40-50% higher than other schools even though flying never happened that often.

  7. Almost all the students in ASA were Indians (Including me) who wanted to complete their training fast and go back home. The complete course generally expected is 6-8 months. ASA promised the students that the whole training (getting CPL with multi engine rating) will take 10 months max, which was a false promise for the whole lot leaving 1 or 2. I have stayed with the school till the last end, came to US with M1visa for a year hoping that I will complete the course within 12 months, which never happened. In 10 months I didn’t even get my private even though I got so called excellent training. Some of the instructors were really good and some worst. The school maintained part 141 strictly and were good at charging money for each and every small things. Thats some facts of the school.

    As for the moment some of the students are finding really hard to believe that this is happening to them. Never on earth have we imagined that such a professional school like ASA will go out of business.
    The ex students should understand the stiuation at the moment and should feel that that they are lucky not to be a part of this never ending nightmare, instead of calling us “looser”.

  8. As a former check instructor for ASA I attest that even though management could have been run better, the training never suffered. There is no overlogging for it’s own existence in theory will only help the student and hurt the school, ie: get in trouble with FAA, less money for the school etc… and we all know management would rather help itself first than the student… you get the point. I myself have quit the school a while back to pursue a career in the airlines, now a First Officer myself and having trained at ASA, my training was one of the best in the industry, even if I had my own frustrations with management both as a student and as an employed instructor.

  9. At least we do not deserve to be stoned all the way. Our main goal was the quality of training, we may have made our mistakes along the way, but we are also humans with a limited capacity… and ASA was a business, a successful business for 6 years in a row. but if the US and countries governments still can’t solve the fuel problems, why did people think we can? Consider this, Six months ago, we went to all the students saying you have to pay an additional $6,000 to $8,000 more for your training, what would have been the response? i personally went to UAE, China to get more profitable business so your families does not have to come up with the additional funds.

    I am surprised, that Sasha Puri, Vikram Pawar, Suraj Chopra and Ameya Kameth did not mention to any one, that they paid their tuition in Gurgaon and that ASA in California never got a penny out of it?!! Specially that 3 of them already graduated, now was ASA out to Scam student? How about each one who paid the $2,000 deposit in Gurgaon? And the US never got a penny of it, but all of you got the credit on your account?

    Now every one is going after the management, fine, put your self in Prince’s shoes and he admits he is an AW!!

    On New Year’s Day, Juana opens up the school and is feeding the fish in the tank; guess what she found in there?
    A: HUMAN POOP!!

    On a weekend evening, a drunken student pulls the fire alarm (Accidently!!) who had to leave the house to baby sit the reset of the students?

    Students playing cricket in the parking lot, using the school’s furniture as goals..
    For God Sake, we had to teach students to take a shower before showing up for class!!

    Add to that, dealing with the FAA, Mechanics, India, lawyers, accountants, airport management for every little thing that students do!!

    Parents, how do I tell a father, that your son is drinking every night and I have an arrest warrant for him? How do I tell your parents, your son is not showing up for lessons because the schedule is too early?! How do we tell them, your son is too busy with the bank teller and does not have time to study?!! Etc…

    Here is what happened,
    April last year 2007, Gurgaon was shut down costing a lot of money
    July, was the last KFA interview
    November, KFA staff came to visit to expand the relationship, instead, students complained about the housing and God knows what else, so they did not give a damn and cancelled the tie up!!
    Still in November, 17 Students panicked and left the school creating more negative publicity.

    Here is a quick lesson in business, if your current customers are pushing your new customers away for whatever reason, you run out of money and eventually your business runs out!!

    ASA lost the market in India, even though, over 200 students graduated form there, all of the sudden, every one forgot that fact!!
    November, I go to UAE to get some business, I got one student
    March I got to China to get some business, it takes time
    April I go to Egypt to get some business, we got 3 .

    All of that and the FAA is on our tail to shut us down, in 2007, we had 109 inspections, and my question to them, if we were so bad, why did not you shut us down?!! And if we were not so bad, why did you inspect us 109 times?
    I still do not have an answer to that, the FAA alone, costed 20% of Prince’s work week just to entertain them!! Why is it, that none of the students asked them that question?

    I am sorry the management had to be strict as we did not have time to baby sit adults who were suppose to be in the air lines in a matter of months, I hope your future captains will make sure to tuck you in your seat before you fly!! Our main goal was to make you a pilot because we truly believed that one day thought out your career, the only thing that will save your life is your training, and that was our priority number 1.

    They took our airplanes, cars and our house is about to be taken, but no one can take this from us
    Our safety record is 100%, 98% of our graduates are successfully employed and satisfied with the training.

  10. Thank you for your email. Some students, after repeated reminders, are under the impression that learning to fly an aircraft simply means filling pages in a log book. Learning happens on the ground and the learning is applied in practical terms in the aircraft. An aircraft is an expensive classroom since it burns approximately $50 per hour in fuel alone.

    If we were to allow students to fly whenever they chose without having a firm grasp on the theoretical aspect of flying, they would simply burn fuel and not learn anything and the quality of training that we provide would surely go down.

    I believe you should know the background and performance of the three students who you mentioned in your email.

    Mr. Akhil Deep Devigari was assigned one of our best and most respected instructors. His flying was progressing fine however; Mr. Devigari was clueless in theoretical matters. His instructor realized that at this rate, Mr. Devigari was simply burning fuel and not spending time on the ground studying basic principles of aerodynamics and airspace regulations, he started giving Mr. Devigari homework assignments with the threat that if the assignments are not completed, he would not fly his next lesson. This had absolutely no impact on Mr. Devigari and the instructors final assessment was that Mr. devigari was “either too lazy or simply did not care for his parents hard earned money.”

    When Mr. Devigari could not keep up with his instructor’s expectations, he simply stopped showing up to school.

    Mr. Prasad Manne: My first personal interaction with Mr. Manne was when he was repeatedly tardy for his ground classes. At that time I disciplined him and informed his parents, his behavior improved for a span of two weeks and then he regressed. His instructor states that Mr. Manne simply does not turn up for his flight lessons. How can we as an organization provide “flying hours” to a student who does not even show up to “fly.” To add insult to injury, Mr. Manne wrote a complaint email yesterday to the school authorities that was the same exact word to word email that Mr. Devigari had written, he simply forwarded the same email and only changed it to his name in the first line. The body and closing statement of the email still contained the names of Mr. Devigari and contained details specific to Mr. Devigari. Mr. Manne was apparently too lazy to type his won email.

    Mr. Manne moved out of the student hostel because the school has a very strict anti-alcohol and anti-smoking policy that is strictly enforced. Alcohol has been found and confiscated from Mr. Manne’s room on a few occasions and he was caught smoking inside his room as well. Mr. Manne decided to move out on his own rather than comply with the hostel rules.

    Another problem I personally had with Mr. Manne was that his uniform and appearance was always untidy. He simply did not even wash his uniform on a regular basis. His white shirts appeared yellow.

    According the people who know Mr. Manne, His intentions are not truly to learn to fly but to figure out a way to obtain a green card. He is truly enjoying his time in the U.S. and has also found himself a few favorite night clubs.

    Mr. Amarnadh Kachepalli never turned up regularly for any of his classes or mandatory student safety meetings. He was a room mate of Mr. Devigari and a very close friend of Mr. Manne. When his friends decided to leave, rather than learn or comply with the school rules, he followed.

    The law states that the student must spend a minimum specified time in school per week in order for them to remain on the student visa. If the minimum attendance requirements are not met, we are obligated by law to terminate the student’s visa or be answerable to the US Government. These students were told that unless they meet the minimum attendance requirements, their student visa’s will be terminated. What they have done is conveniently forgotten the part regarding minimum attendance and replaced it with the matter of a refund to gain sympathy from you.

    At any given moment, we have approximately 120 students exclusively from India. I myself, the management of the school, and most senior instructors here are all originally from India and understand the students plight and It makes us very proud that we are producing top notch pilots for the Indian Skies. It breaks are hearts to see certain students who come to the US and behave in this way and start abusing alcohol and start visiting night clubs on a regular basis rather than learn.

    We are here to teach people to fly, not to teach people how to become productive members of society. It is very obvious to me as a parent myself the type of upbringing these individuals have undergone back home.

    If the student shows up and is willing to put in his or her best effort and learn, then we will teach them with an open heart. If they are here to experience America, then we are not a tourist agency. After all it is our reputation that is at stake.

    You mention limited sources of income for the above mentioned students and I understand their plight. However, the above mentioned students do have disposable income to be spent on alcohol and other “fun” activities rather than washing their clothes.

    The student contract, which these students signed, clearly stipulates that the student purchases the said training. The contract clearly states and highlights responsibilities of each party. It is very obvious to me and it would also be very obvious to you as well that the above mentioned students did not hold up their end of the bargain by simply showing up to school prepared.

    As mentioned earlier, at any given moment, we have approximately 120 students from India. The students who are here to learn are progressing just fine. The students who are too busy experiencing “America” get stuck and then start wasting your time and mine.

    I look forward to communicating with you in the future!

    Thank you,

  11. Reny doesnot know anything about business and aviation. She thinks she knows a lot after operating an unsuccessful business for a few years.
    If she had any eduaction or experience prior to getting into this field, she should have seen it coming, and not blaming the students who paid hundreds of thousands of dollars without even an hour of flying.

  12. Prince and Reny pretended to be aviators and business professionals, and were able to fool the world for a while, now their reality is known to the world, and they are paying for their sins. Sadly all this at the cost of Indian Students.

  13. WHERE IS ALL THE MONEY GONE? I WAS JUST INFORMED BY A STUDENT THAT PRINCES FATHER IN INIA IS PAYING TUTION FEE BACK TO SOME OF THE STUDENTS IN INDIA. WHY AND HOW DID HE GET THE FUNDS?

  14. Do Hell with the untidy and clever students …we pay to the SCHOOL to get TRAINING. We don’t care if a student comes untidy or naked to the school.
    you say that some students were untidy, lazy ( which no one will believe)…..then how did these few students affect 110 students. If those students left the SCHOOL long back then how come 110 students got stuck with their training, how come you don’t give training to 110 students ???
    How does 110 students get affected by the behavior of 3 students?
    Why did Japji Kaur left your school in 2006 and completed her training in Mazzie Flying Service , Fresno just in 5 months and 10 days and proved out to be an out standing student at the age of 18.
    So what do you have to say about such students?
    What do you think the readers are FOOL !
    Do they not know what is the Background of Manpreet Singh. Who came in US in 1995 by applying for political asylum and then joint Wings Over California and cheated with the school for $4000/- and also illegally worked in a liquor shop and so on…….!!

    Think about the advertisement you do , there you say that the minimum qualification required is 12 grade pass with physics and math…..why didn’t you test the caliber of the students before giving them admission ? You didn’t even pay $13000/- or so to the people who perform the psychometric test of the student for ASA. You didn’t pay for the fuel then how come you say that you are at LOSS? All the individuals who commute everyday to their work or job place have to pay for the gas for which they don’t get anything extra from their employers and still they go to their work regularly, so what a deal about you who has not paid the gas bill.
    I am going to publish one snap in which Reny is seen drinking along with the students so why HUE AND CRY about students. Manpreet is talking about character and upbringing of the students but he himself is not able to talk even a sentence without using “F” word.
    I can write pages after pages about Manpreet and Reny’s wicked intentions and deeds.
    Why don’t you give the debit and credit side of the account, you give only debit side which in fact not incurred at all because you have cheated all your creditors. You re talking about the planes taken by the bank, why will not they take it? , because they belongs to them,you didn’t pay even a dime from your pocket and same with the car and house..you didn’t pay a DIME.
    Manpreet if you are a son of 1 father and if you really understand the difference between a wife and mother-in-law then GIVE the ACCOUNT Of 4.4 Million Dollar….give the account of each and every penny.

    To all Students…… Did you read what these 2 crooks have to say……dude…..this is like
    “ek sau das (110) chuhe khake billa (manpreet_ aur billi (reny) haj ko chale”.
    Now the translation in English for the poeple who don’t understand hindi…..the meaning is
    “after killing 110 rats the he cat (manpreet) and the she cat (reny) are going on pilgrimage”.

    Manpreet and Reny atleast now stop fooling people……because no one will believe you…..you are FINISHED……….you are FINISHED.

  15. Dear ASA Students,

    At the outset I am sure those who took the Psychometric test under me for the ASA-KFA program, would remember me and my steadfast criticism of students who did not perform well. Anyways, we had severed ties with ASA after they did not renew the contract with us and inspite of that on personal requests from Hasher Khan, Reny and also their Indian Representatives(Study Abroad), I continued doing tests for 3 more months. Later realised that I was being conned and would never get paid for the tests done on the pretext that I had not released results… that’s obvious, why should I release the results unless we are assured of being paid for our services. Repeated phone calls to Hasher/Reny/Sergio yeilded no result and when I did a bit of research I was sure that ASA would shut down sooner than later and I had predicted this as early as Nov’2007 after the KFA fall out. In fact I had advised a few students who were in touch with me to get out before it is too late. I was told by these students that Prince has thereatened not to return the money if anyone leaves.

    Just some food for thought from my visit to Atwater from 4th July to 9th July’2008. I went there on request of few parents and Study Abroad, Chennai to helo students secure transfers to better flight schools and also organise a good attorney to file a law suit. Firstly my observation was that there are far too many groups of students and each group with their personal agenda on how to solve the situation, unfortunately I found most of the groups far too immature in theri actions as well as long term objectives, it appeared as if they had lost focus on why they had gone to USA. I do not blame them considering the trauma they would have undergone after being evicted from the barrackes and realising that their flying dream has crash landed.

    1.As Bhavna brought out, Who is “Prince”? if you just go back a few years behind you will realise that apparently he started out as a Flight Instructor in Amritsar Flying School, Punjab, where there are unconfirmed reports that he was involved in cases of fraud following which he fled to USA/Canada.

    2. Can Kingfisher be indeminified from the whole scene as they play a major role in the whole deal, most of the kids joined ASA because of the KFA tie up, inspite of knowing that they were going to pay more than other flight schools. The fact lies that ASA continued to use the KFA tie up to lure new students even after the fall out. How come KFA never did a audit on a flight school they endorsed for their cadet program? Which should have been a mandatory practise in view of KFA allowing ASA to use their logo for co-branding…. this beats me totally… unless Prince had been paying KFA officials responsible for such an audit.

    3. $4.4 million and counting, I am not a great finnance expert, but being a Pilot and an aviation consultant with thorough knowledge on what goes into running a flight school from fuel, maintenance, aircraft lease, spares, landing charges,etc etc….I can safely say that it is next to impossible to expend such a large amount of money in such a short period of time. Well the finance experts might want to prove me wrong by putting pen to paper, yet they would fail miserably. I visited the ASA ramp in Atwater, personally and saw that there were hardly 7 or 8 aeroplanes on the ramp, wonder whatever happened to the 40 odd aircraft if they were actually owned by ASA. Well if they were on lease then on what did Reny/ Prince spend money on.

    4. I am sorry to say but, after extensive talks with various Attorneys I can say that recovery of the money of all the students may not be possible if they fiel for Bankruptcy under Chapter 7 of the Federal Law, but still a lot depends on discovery of assets within the USA to recover the money. Knowing Prince and Reny, I am sure there is no money in USA coz I don’t think either of them is so foolish to have assets in USA and are waiting for those assets to be attached through a Court inujnction. Yes, sending them behind bars maybe a probable proposition, even though it is too early to say that. So, basically there are far too many variables and let us all accept the fact that no miraculous recovery of fees paid is going to happen overnight.

    5. I was told that the Indian Embassy in SFO has provided 2 attorneys who are willing to fight the law suit against ASA, without any money being paid upfront and want 40% of the money recovered as attorney fees, which I feel is ridiculous. I wonder what the hell is the Indian Embassy doing, are they trying to get the students be duped of their rightful claim of damages for what they have undergone. I would rather pay the attorney his fees and enjoy the money he recovers as damages. Because if there is money to be recovered from assets then I might as well as recover my complete money. How do we know whether there is money to be recovered, well that can only be ascertained through a thorough investigation by a competent financial investigator. Please keep in mind that this is a huge law suitand the claim for damages can amount to as high as $5 million upwards. even that might be an understatement. So just tread the road ahead with caution, those offering help may not actually be a kinght in shining armour.

    As they always say advise is always free, whether you take it or leave it is your choice…. so here goes my two pence on this issue to all of you ASA students.

    1. Those with funds crunch right now, try and organise funds enough to fund your Private at least, get ur PPL and head back to India, put your head down and study, clear your DGCA papers and then re assess your finances and try and get into Indigo or Air India Express cadet program, which shall at least assure you a job in the current volatile market.

    2. Those who can afford to complete their training and are not a part of the KFA cadet program, you better think about getting yourself a CFI and work towards time building before getting back to India, try gettng add-on ratings on King Air B200 or a Citation CJ2, so that the chances of your employability increase in Corporate sector.

    3. Along with your CPL get yourself an Aviation Management Diploma from Embry Riddle Aeronautical University so that you can get placement in Airline Operations while you slowly work your way back towards the flight deck.

    I wish you guys all the best in all your future endeavours and all of you are most welcome to mail me at kishore@arrowaviationsolutions.com or call me at +91 981 856 4707 for more “free” advise.. ha ha ha…

    Happy Landings,
    Capt C Kishore

  16. Capt Kishore, Thank you for your email.
    You are right that the ASA students are in different groups and not united and this is what was happening before and so Manpreet was taking advantage of it and fooling everybody.
    We know that it is hard to get the money back, but we will try our best to put Manpreet behind bars.

    Manpreet and Reny…..atleast now stop fooling people and swallowing their hard earned money. You both are talking about “children” and “parents”…..even you both are parents….did you ever think even once before cheating with the students and their parents?
    Manpreet…you are talking about you being a father ….Do you think after doing all this and saying that you understand the feelings of parents because even you are a father :. really suits you???? Well stop saying such things because it sounds as if you are making fun of it. Reny says “how will she tell the parents that their children are drunk or not studying or whatever”……well Reny and Manpreet….did you ever think that after cheating people how are you going to face your own parents….do they really know how you both are or you are fooling them too???

    There is a saying that “The welfare of your children to a great extent depends on how we conduct ourselves and set them an example ourselves”….. Not about the students or their parents but did you at least think about your own children?

    A person can deceive the world but can never deceive himself or herself , besides all this the man upstairs whom we call GOD always watches on us.
    Though we lost our money, but our TRUTH is with us, our GOD is with us….and that is what one need to live a happy and good life.
    In this case….you have NOTHING….NOTHING.

  17. Hello ASA students,

    First off, I’d like to express my sincere sympathy for those students stranded by the recent ASA fiasco and wish you all the early arrival of meaningful assistance to alleviate the current enduring hardship. I have no personal stake in this ordeal and neither lost nor gained anything from this occurrence. Nevertheless I can’t stop being indignant about both Prince and Reny of their incompetence and deceit whichever the characterization is appropriate that brought to cause a current plight onto those young aspiring Indian students.

    In as much as I’d like to believe that Prince and Reny stashed away a sizable amount of cash somewhere as some still like to speculate or believe and therefore there’s some chance of recovery of their prepaid fees, it pains me to tell you all such chances to exist is literally infinitesimal if not nonexistent.

    I know it’s easier said than done but give it a rest on a hope of recovery by a means of law suit. In the Breach of Contract case such as this, you will most likely prevail in the court and obtain a judgement. But think about it, what good is it that the judgement that can collect nothing from the defaulting party. A writ of execution issued from the court is just a useless paper of no value. Remember no one wins in a law suit except lawyers. (been there, done that, fought an airport use permit issue against a county ordinance in the US Federal Court and won the battle but lost the war in the end after consuming 3 years and $150K in legal fees, .a Pyrrhic victory indeed.

    Judging from the reported size of operation,(110 students, 43 instructors, 40 aircraft) the monthly operating cost could be anywhere from $225k to $250k/mo. or more to keep that size of operation going. Remember ASA did not have $4.4 mil in a lump sum cash to start with. It’s an accumulative total revenue over the time they were in business. Unless they had an sufficient operating capital set aside which I doubt, their monthly operating expenses were entirely relied on one source; student fees. There’re good months with some surplus fund left and there’re some bad months with an insufficient amount of income even to cover the monthly overhead. It’s highly probable that ASA needed at minimum 4 to 5 new students to keep its doors open. All fees collected from the students were all spent long since and I bet they’re just scraping by from month to month with a hope of someday getting ahead with an arrival of new enrolment group consisting of substantial number of students. Unfortunately, that day never came and the KFA fallout was the last straw. And while they were still at it, the problems started to pile up one after another. It probably started with a minor student’s complain and then rapidly growing to many issues that eventually raised red flags and invited all kinds of government scrutinies from all directions FAA, County’s office, IRS, FTA (Calif. State Franchise Tax Board) and all. Despite less than honorable character references made about both Prince and Reny in many posts, I doubt they had planned this outcome from the beginning. It’s a case of pure incompetence and mismanagement. They had somehow managed to slip their foot in the door and pried open the business opportunity just in time to ride the surging tide of pilot shortages beginning to be faced by the Indian airlines.

    Some of you already know about another flight school closure earlier this year which draws some parallels to the events at ASA in the order of far greater magnitude.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Silver_State_Helicopters

    Silver State Helicopter (SSH) school headquartered in Las Vegas closed abruptly by filing Chapter 7 leaving 2,500 students out to the street. They operated over 250 helicopters at over 40 schools nationwide in the US. All students prepaid $70,000 each for their training fees. A Class action suit is pending in the Nevada Court and the lawyers are having field days. Good lawyers can compose an opposing lawyer’s argument before composing his own and they are very good and capable indeed and naturally they command high fees most can’t afford.

    The only chance of recovery of the student’s fees from ASA is by naming KFA along with banks and lending institutions as co-defendant on the premise that they too are culpable for the damages sustained by those entrusting students. Their failure to perform proper audit and due diligence on the flight school led to the demise of the program today otherwise succeeded. This premise has a much greater chance of succeeding and the judgement amount of $5 mil range plus legal expenses has far more chances of collection from KFA and the Indian lending institutions involved than nonexistent collection probability from the duo Prince and Reny.

    Now sit tight and think hard about the good advices offered in the Capt. Kishore’s post and begin to make a check list of your own action plan and proceed to follow thru on it one by one. BTW, make sure to insist on a kind of insurance policy like the one mentioned in the navdeev’s post if you’re fortunate enough to take out another loan again.

    Before too long, you’ll be out of the soup and turbulence and you’ll be back cruising in the smooth blue skies again. How do I know this? Well I went through the similar ordeals few times myself since my first arrival in the US in 1968 from Asia and got my ATP, A&P, MEI, AD and few more ratings and pursued my aviation career until my semi-retirement from flight duties few years ago. Well, that’s my two cents. Hang tight and never ever give up your goal.
    All the best.

    Echo Yankee

  18. Echo Yankee…..thanks for your kind and long input on the issue. I donot know how much you know about operations and costs of an aviaiton business. You mention “the monthly operating cost could be anywhere from $225k to $250k/mo. or more to keep that size of operation going”, ON WHAT??????
    The only fixed expense the flight school has is THE RENT which is maybe a few thousand dollars a month. Any other expenses, are only incurred if the student flies or takes ground classes, and then it is paid from the funds received from the student. PLEASE REVEAL YOUR IDENTITY AND CONTACT INFO AS MORE STUDENTS ARE INTERESTED IN YOUR VALUABLE INPUT.

  19. This is a comment posted by a person name “Shael”

    I would like to give the important information which no one knows till the day.

    Prince or Manpreet Singh or MP or Manna of Amritsar, Punjab India, was a terrorist during 1993-1995 in Punjab. There are visible proofs available in the Police station civil lines, Amritsar. He used to do Kidnappings, Bank decoities and many more crimes which are still registered in many police stations in India.

    Prince, Son of an ex-Army officer (AMC Doctor) so intellegent in cheating that before doing bank decoity in Amritsar, he made a well plan and worked in the same bank with fake identity card for complete one month without coming into doubt and then looted the bank with his other friends.

    He cheated his own Uncle (Army Major) during army recruitement rally in amritsar by taking 10,000 Rs. from many army aspirant youths as he promised them for a job in Army on the name of his Army officer Uncle who was unaware of his this act.

    Reny kozman is still not his legal wife as she is already married to some one else. Prince is also married twice and reny is the third girl in his life in USA.

    There are many other informations regarding his act, but what ever he has done now, is extreme and it was well planned.

  20. After reading about Mr.Singh’s background and his History….I hope the “Faithful Followers” of Manpreet and Reny must be feeling very Proud and Happy.
    Well go ahead and take more training from them so that even you can become Notorious like Manpreet and Reny.

  21. Pilot747

    “…how much you know about operations and costs of an aviaiton business.” you ask.
    In my ball park estimation of the ASA monthly expense of $225k ~$250k is based on the following operational assumptions, give or take:

    Payroll (40 CFIs, plus mx crew, plus owner’s draw) $115k
    FICA /Emp. Taxes $ 25k
    Insurance (monthly premium) A/C, Operation, Liability $ 10k
    Rent (Dormitory, Hangar, Office) $ 18k
    Fuel/Oil (10k gal. 220qt.) $ 54k
    Repair and parts $ 3k
    Total $225k

    It is based on a 40 hrs. per day operation for 20~25 students flying 1.3~1.5 hr.per lesson. For a good month (good wx, A/C availability, etc.) figure 10% more for additional direct operating costs. Again it’s my ball park figure but I feel I am not too far off on this numbers, in fact Bhavana N’s post stating that Prince told them he needs 5 new students every months to keep the operation going pretty much validates my above estimate.

    Remember ASA did not have the amount of $4.4 million in lump sum capital to start with. All the student’s fees were spent long since as they came in and then used for buying additional airplanes and hiring more instructors as their enrolment grew all the while keeping their daily operation going. While they were at it, then the school’s failure to keep the students content and satisfied stemming from the schedule issue to the housing conditions and myriad of other issues raised red flags to invite the various governmental agency scrutiny. I won’t be surprised to see at minimum the following agencies are pursuing their investigation if not already into the ASA matter.

    Federal Agency
    DHS Dept. of Homeland Security International school and student law enforcement
    FAA Federal Aviation Administration Airman and Aircraft regulations enforcement
    IRS Internal Revenue Service Corporate and individual tax collection
    California State Agency
    PUC Public Utilities Commission Aircraft insurance enforcement (not to be confused with the
    county insurance requirement)
    FTB Franchise Tax Board State tax collection
    BOE Board of Equalization Use and sales tax collection (on aircraft purchase & registration)
    CPSE Council of Post Secondary Education Vocational school approval

    Merced County Agency
    BOS Board of Supervisors Operation lease administration (operation insurance, etc.)
    PWD Public Works Department Airport facility use compliance
    AQD Air Quality Department Aircraft operation emission and noise code enforcement
    CAO County Assessor’s Office County tax collection

    City of Atwater Agency
    CCO City Clerk’s Office City business license code enforcement

    In as much as it pains me to tell the students and parents who lost their substantial amount of money at ASA, there practically exists no chance of recovery at least from the duo Prince and Reny’s end. If by any chance, some recovery comes your way, consider yourself really lucky and be grateful.

    Rushing to a lawyer to litigate the matter in court in hope of getting your money back is like pounding more nail to the coffin. I must make a flat statement here that you will never recover a dime by litigating the case, none. It’s harsh but sadly it is true and all too familiar in everyday life herein America.

    Of course small time lawyers in town (it’s likely to be too small a case and not appealing to the well established consummate lawyers to begin with) would love to take your case (read-money) in a sympathetic gesture. Like I stated in my previous post, only chance of monetary recovery that I can reasonably come to think of is by naming both KFA and the lending institutions in India that made loans to the students as co-defendants and go after them for the lack of fiduciary duties and their failure to conduct proper audit/monitor and evaluation of the flight school that the students were led to participate.

    I suggest to consult with a competent international litigation attorney who’s willing to take the case on a contingency fee (success fee)basis. Remember good lawyers can compose an opposing lawyer’s argument before composing his own. Do some research and find one who has successful record in similar case and you feel comfortable dealing with. Don’t waste your money on lawyers who cannot structure the case by naming KFA and Indian lending institutions as co-defendants.

    Also another word of caution is to be aware of those help being extended from other flight schools. While they all want to help but precisely what they mean? Are they willing to help the students by offering some kind of financial assistance in a form of unsecured loan or extended credit line or what? Or they just help themselves to collect whatever the students left with to take advantage of the situation, and this seems more likely the case since it’s hard to believe any flight school offers training free or even at substantial discount. I maybe wrong but make sure to find out exactly what “help” means before you head to their place. Also make sure to confirm the school’s F1/M1, 141 certification status is all in order before you enroll.

    Now as to revealing my personal identity, I find this present mode of communication with my handle in this blog site quite adequate and appropriate to freely carry out and continue our discussion on the matters at hand and see no pressing need to change otherwise for the time being. I would welcome anyone writing me for question and comment related to the ASA as it further unfolds in this blog site.

    Echo Yankee

  22. Echo Yankee……..I donot have a share of the pie (it seems you do) that was all stolen from the hardworking parents and their kids. So I will be short and to the point. As I mentioned earlier, if you were aware how flight schools work, you would know that all the expenses you have mentioned are only incurred by the school if the student (s) uses them. In fact the student pays more than what the school pays further, and that is how the school makes money. Now if the student didn’t use those services, that means the school didn’t have to pay those further, and the funds should be in the students account, unless they were misused. Going by Prince’s reputation, and history, it only leads to the fact that this is a case of fraud.

    The agencies pursuing the case should not have granted ASA permission to enrol and cheat students to begin with. I am glad they are investigating the matter, and the crooks will be brought to justice.

    Your not revealing your identity, and advising us against filing a lawsuit, but having a lot of knowledge about what went on at ASA, makes us beleive that you are one of the CROOKS on the run.

  23. Now about Prince and Reny:

    I don’t know them, never met them and have no personal knowledge about them other than what’s been reported in this and other blog sites. So my comment is very limited and therefore I disincline to rush to a judgement until more concrete facts are publicly made known.

    Naturally some of the students seem to spare no energy for digging up dirt on Prince and Reny, and I completely understand this when I put myself in their shoe. I too feel the rage, devastation, frustration and stupendous disappointment even observing this unfortunate unfoldment of fiasco from the sideline.

    In as much as many students and their parents want to see Prince and Reny both swiftly put behind bars, this may prove a bit difficult unless they are criminally indicted and convicted in the US justice system.

    So far, all infractions and alleged violations remain within a boundary of civil matters. If the investigation leads to the criminal jurisdiction, then the law enforcement agency at various levels such as FBI, INS, DA’s office, Sheriff’s Dept. and Police Dep. are to be involved in addition to the agencies enumerated in my previous post.

    Despite the egregious business ethics and their louche character, I seriously doubt if they planned the recent abrupt closure of their business at the outset. After all, they had a good thing going for a while and so it appeared for everyone to see. They struggled to survive and even attempted a fire sale for a quick exit at the last ditch effort but to no avail. They did not have a choice in the end.

    Now you and I don’t like this but it was a business failure, a normal occurrence and no different from any other business failures including flight schools except in this case, the owners Prince and Reny may walk out free with or without filing a bankruptcy protection provided under the law leaving those students and other creditors holding empty bags.

    Simply put, there’s nothing anyone can do as far as recovery of any money from the debtor who has little assets left if any is concerned. It’s not fair, you might say, yes my friend it’s not fair at all and it’s the hard fact of life herein America. There’re so many other things that not fair in our everyday life. We just have to learn to stay away and not entrapped in these sort of situations . When encountering such situation, you’ve got to get over it and move on vowing never to get involved in a same mess again from the lesson learned.

    Can Prince and Reny move on and walk out free?, you might ask. Not so fast, the justice will be served for their misdeeds, in fact they are being punished quite sometime for now by way of complete loss of their honor and credibility among their family members and friends and business associates, many sleepless nights, loss of social standings and continuing loss of whatever the money and assets still left at an alarming rate paid for his lawyers to fend off a fusillade of summons coming from all directions.

    Prince and Reny together threw a jumbo boomerang packed with their misdeeds and when it reaches out to make one eighty, it will come right back to deliver a never failing fatal blow onto them. Believe me, it will happen with all certainty. Just wait and see it happen. That’s, my friend, I call it an ultimate justice.
    My two cents for now.

    Echo Yankee

  24. Now about the money matters:

    Despite a tight regulatory control over flight schools, FAA does not regulate money matters as it stands today and the school owner/operator has free hand over student’s fund. It’s a classic fox guarding the henhouse case.

    Unless student’s fund is held in an escrow and managed by an escrow officer, the availability and existence of money for the balance shown in the book at any given time is never be assured.

    I am so sorry to say but the students and parents who believe and expect the money for their account balance still exists need to wake up and face a hard reality. Moneys were spent and long gone and whatever the assets still left at ASA, if any, is likely to be far too small to cover any of their claims.

    People believed all along their money was safe and sound until one day wake up to find out everything crashing down on them. Think what happened at Enron, WorldCom, Tyco, SSH to name just a few. All has caused their entrusting people losses of a horrendous order of magnitude.

    In the wake of the SSH closure early February this year, there seems some legislative action is in the offing to safeguard student tuition from school closure. It’s about time for such legislation.

    BTW, remember the boomerang, Mr. Kenneth Lay of Enron made his early departure from this planet Earth before the scheduled sentencing.

    Echo Yankee

  25. Don’t worry Echo Yankee, FRAUD IS A CRIMINAL OFFENCE in the US, it is not civil. Lying to the US government for political asylum, is a CRIME.

    You donot know Prince and Reny (the whore ! who is someone else’s wife but sleeps with Prince, and others!) but we do. They are CROOKS who are now paying for cheating the people who provided them with money and employment. ‘What goes around, comes around’.

    Misuse of the corporation funds is a CRIME in the US, the government doesnot treat it as a sweet business mistake or ‘normal occurence’ as you mention. I do understand that for them the business grew in a couple years beyond their dreams and capabilities, and that drove up their GREED further.

    It is not going to be as easy a cake walk as you think for these CROOKS to get away with their sins, they will be rubbing their nose on every feet they come across from here on.

    I donot know which honor and credibilty are you referring to, maybe you are talking about the sham they were able to put on for these few years at the cost of Indian students? Because if you go back just a few years, it seems they are back to their true colors and social position.

    Your two cents are not even worth a half a penny. I suggest you stop wasting our time, and Runnnnnnnnnn!

  26. Keep it Up “pilot747”

    I agree with you. Whether we get our money or not….but we will put all our efforts to put these CROOKS behind bars .
    No matter how long it takes, but one thing we know that TRUTH is with all of us and TRUTH ALWAYS TRIUMPHS.

    I would like to know when did you join ASA ?

  27. I really want to bring this to everyones notice and I am writing this thing second time since my first post was deleted. And this is true and can be confirmed if needed. Prince’s grandfather once long time back was beaten up by a mob ” a group of people” in Punjab and was thrown out of the village because he tried to do a same kind of fraud and was caught redhanded. Fraud on the name of committee system. So what to say guys its in his blood. Wait for a few years and a new big fraud is in the making.

  28. Are you sure that is Prince’s?????? And not from Ereny’s real husband. or ….jan has no role to play? (maybe that is why he is so protective)

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