Islamabad - The Senate Special Committee on the Performance of PIA has expressed serious apprehensions over the system of accountability in the administration of the national flag carrier.

The committee meeting was held with Senator Mushahidullah Khan as its convener at the Parliament House on Thursday. The meeting was informed that the captain, who was involved in violating the rules and inviting a Chinese passenger in the cockpit of PK-853 on May 6 has not been suspended yet.

The meeting was informed that the captain has been grounded and deployed with the Karachi office but has not been suspended.

It was also informed that the same pilot flew the flight again from Beijing to Islamabad despite being already grounded and has previously also been involved in harassment inquiries and fake degree cases.

Adviser to Prime Minister on Aviation Affairs Sardar Mehtab Abbasi assured the committee that the pilot will be suspended today and the suspension orders will be communicated to the convener and members of the committee.

The committee also discussed the matter of Captain Amir Hashmi who was reportedly sleeping during PK-785 flight for more than one hour on 26 April, and the matter of heroine found in the PIA aircraft at the Heathrow airport a few days back. Regarding the recommendations of a sub-committee, the committee and the adviser found themselves at odds on the subject whether or not the recommendations of the parliamentary sub-committee were binding on PIA.

The sub-committee members after having 15-20 long sittings with all stakeholders in Karachi and Islamabad had compiled a detailed report which was later laid before a Senate sitting.

The committee sought the implementation status of different recommendations made in the report but the PM’s adviser was of the view that PIACL was now a company and was not under direct control of the government, hence making the recommendations binding might affect its functioning according to the new business model.

The committee members, however, were of the view that the government still holds 91 percent of shares of the newly transformed company and hence it requires parliamentary oversight.  The matter will be discussed with the Senate chairman and the status of recommendations will be decided afterwards.



Our Staff Reporter