PIA plane taken to Germany caused heavy liabilities



Salahuddin haider


A PIA A-130 aircraft, stolen from airline headquarters office in Karachi, now parked at a German airport has incurred heavy liabilities which authorities here find difficult to settle.
It was flown to Germany by the then airline chief executive complaining his salaries had remained unpaid, and therefore he flew the aircraft to his country as compensation and initially sold to a museum for 5,000 US dollars.
The question is how could civil aviation authorities whose control tower takes care of Pakistani air space, allowed it to take off, and on what grounds.
The principle poser here is can a chief executive fly an aircraft. He must have pilot license, but even then he needed permission from authorities, particularly from airport control tower to take off or even taxi to runway. If that permission was given has enquiry been ordered against CAA officials or PIA customer service and maintenance officials. Nothing official is being given by airline management or its pubic relations department about the sordid episode.

Now the aircraft bearing Pakistani registration number is reportedly parked at one of the German airports. Its parking fee for such a long period has ballooned to beyond payment capacity of PIA which itself is suffering from lack of resources.

The question is how long this could be tolerated, and when will PIA aircraft, a national asset, will be able to be brought back.

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