Pakistan International Airlines to Ground 150 Pilots Suspected of ‘Dubious’ Licences

Pakistan International Airlines (PIA) has announced to ground at least 150 pilots who are suspected to have ‘dubious’ flying licences.

The airline’s decision came after the provisional inquiry report, held the pilots responsible for causing the Karachi plane crash on May 22.

While presenting the plane crash inquiry report, Pakistan’s Minister for Aviation Ghulam Sarwar Khan had revealed in the National Assembly on Wednesday that around 40 per cent of the active commercial pilots in the country hold ‘fake’ flying licences. His announcement has created quite a stir in the country as people raised questions about the safety of passengers travelling on the national carrier and other private Pakistani airlines.

Taking notice of the report about pilots with ‘fake’ licences, the Supreme Court of Pakistan on Thursday has asked report from the Pakistan Civil Aviation Authority.  Pakistan Chief Justice Gulzar Ahmed summoned a reply from the director-general of the Civial Aviation Athority within two weeks.  He said that he wanted to know how the fake flyhing licences are issued and what action is being taken against the people who issue them.

Putting passengers’ lives at risk is a major crime, said Justice Ahmed. He has also summoned the heads of PIA and private airlines including Air Blue and Serene Air at next hearing. They have been told to submit reports verifying the licences of the pilots in their employ.

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