LAHORE – Contradictory statements of Pakistan International Airlines’ (PIA) authorities have created mist over exact number of operational aircraft.
Pakistan International Airlines (PIA) Spokesperson Danyal Gilani said that national flag career’s fleet comprised of 37 aircraft out of which 3 ATR aircraft were grounded following tragedy of PK-661 in December-2106.
Meanwhile, well-informed sources gave parallel statements to that of PIA’s spokesperson.
Sources narrated that national flag career’s fleet consisted of 35 aircraft out of which 5 ATR aircraft were grounded after fatal crash in Decemeber-2016. Pakistan Civil Aviation Authority (PCAA) later gave green signal to grounded aircraft.
With addition of two new aircraft, PIA’s figure of operational aircraft stands at 29 through which it is performing flight operations inside country and abroad, revealed inside aware.
Sources further revealed that national flag career has grounded eight of its aircraft out of which three suffered engine problems after birds’ collisions and five others were grounded on directives of CAA.
Sources narrated that national flag career has acquired 18 aircraft on wet and dry lease at relatively higher cost.
Company which grants aircraft on wet lease looks after crew, staff and other matters whereas concerned airline is responsible for all matters if it acquires planes on dry lease.
Aircraft that are acquired on lease are old ones and money in billions/year is drilled out from national exchequer for payment of installments.
Meanwhile, engineering section of PIA repairs aircraft of national and international companies which adds Rs40.54 million in PIA’s treasury every year.