Pakistan aviation authority suspends licenses of 34 more PIA pilots

By: |
Published: July 8, 2020 5:38 PM

Last week, the national flag carrier terminated the services of 52 employees on various charges, including fake degrees.

The PIA has grounded more than 140 pilots after it was revealed in the National Assembly that some of them held 'dubious and fake' licenses.The PIA has grounded more than 140 pilots after it was revealed in the National Assembly that some of them held ‘dubious and fake’ licenses. (File image)

Pakistan’s aviation authority has suspended the licenses of 34 more pilots of Pakistan International Airlines on suspicion of holding fake degrees, according to media reports on Wednesday.

Last week, the national flag carrier terminated the services of 52 employees on various charges, including fake degrees. The PIA has grounded more than 140 pilots after it was revealed in the National Assembly that some of them held ‘dubious and fake’ licenses.

According to a notification issued by the Civil Aviation Authority, licenses of 34 more pilots will remain suspended till the inquiry against them has not been completed, Geo News reported.

Meanwhile, the European Union Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) on Tuesday ordered its 32 member states to bar Pakistani pilots from working, following reports of fake licenses being issued to them, the report added.

The EASA has asked its member countries for details of Pakistani captains.
The letter sent to the member states by the EASA stated that the CAA has revealed irregularities in the issuance of 40 per cent of licences.

The move follows a decision by the EASA to temporarily suspend PIA’s authorisation to operate to the EU member states for a period of 6 months effective July 1, the Express Tribune reported.

“Approximately 40 per cent of the airline pilot licenses issued by PCAA are either falsified or otherwise not ICAO (International Civil Aviation Organisation) compliant,” read the letter, describing the situation as a “grave safety concern”.

The decision by the EASA has been taken after 262 Pakistani pilots were grounded, whose licences the Aviation Minister Ghulam Sarwar Khan had termed dubious in the National Assembly.

Separately, a PIA flight steward went missing from his hotel after arriving in Toronto by a flight carrying passengers from Islamabad, Dawn News reported.

PIA steward Yasir disappeared from the hotel he was staying in after reaching Toronto on PIA flight PK-781.

The flight steward was found missing from his hotel when the airline’s senior staff contacted him on Monday.

He reportedly replied that he was going to another city and after that his cell phone remained switched off, the report added.

The PIA station manager in Toronto informed the Toronto airport authorities that Yasir had gone to another city.

An investigation into the matter has been launched by the PIA management, the report said.

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