RAWALPINDI: Federal Minister for Aviation Ghulam Sarwar on Saturday said that degrees of 30 more pilots out of the 262 pilots suspected of obtaining dubious licenses have turned out to be dubious, ARY NEWS reported.
Addressing a presser in Rawalpindi, Ghulam Sarwar said that out of the overall pilots who were declared dubious, 141 of them belong to the PIA while nine of them work for Air Blue and Serene Air. “They are grounded immediately,” he said.
He said that the flight operations to Europe remained suspended temporarily and the PIA has the right to appeal into the decision.
“We will take strict action against the pilots who are found possessing dubious or fake licenses,” said Ghulam Sarwar while terming the PIA pilots as one of the most professional pilots.
The aviation minister said that they were cleaning the mess of the previous governments as neither pilots were recruited after 2018 nor any test was conducted to issue licenses during the period.
“The aviation ministry saw political recruitments with 11 chief executives of the PIA replaced during the past 10 years,” he said adding that they took over the PIA with Rs 462 billion debt.
The national flag carrier has not purchased any plane since 2006, said Ghulam Sarwar.
“We have to rectify our errors to make PIA one of the best airlines,” he said adding that the case of five Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) officials posted at the licensing section would be referred to the Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) and no one would be spared for committing fraudulent activities.
He said that the airlines across the globe had suffered losses of US$350 billion due to COVID-19 pandemic and many international airlines have terminated their staff due to the ongoing situation.
“In the current situation, we have brought down PIA losses from Rs 4 billion to Rs 1 billion,” he said adding that overall losses suffered by the national flag carrier during the pandemic have reached upto Rs6 billion.
The aviation minister said that similarly, the CAA was suffering losses of Rs 2 billion weekly, making it a loss of Rs 20 billion in a moth in terms of flying charges it receives.
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