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Pakistan International Airlines – A PSE With 33% Fake Licensed Pilots


In 1970s, Pakistan International Airlines was among the fastest growing airline services. An ad from the past claims that every 6 minutes, a PIA plane lands or takes off from Pakistan. Being the first airline services to include Boeing 707 in fleet, PIA enjoyed its dominance in Asia. PIA became the first airline to complete the world's longest nonstop flight by a commercial airliner by using Boeing 777-200LR on November 10th, 2005 and yet the record has to be broken. But the question is, how did the best airliner from 1970s failed in 21st century, in an era of technology and innovation where businesses are sustaining.

Overtime, the weak political infrastructure was pushing PIA towards failure but no one in the government had a glimpse of the reason that could be the actual reason behind what is happening. Many accused that PIA has overemployed human resource, more than what they needed. An incident that attracted the investigators took place on 22 May, 2020. When flight number 8303 crashed into a residential area in Karachi killing 97 people on board from Lahore to Karachi for the celebrations of Eid-ul-Fitar. The unfortunate Airbus A320 was accused of technical malfunctions but a thorough investigation by different teams and government representatives denied the accusations on the Airplane manufacturer and pointed fingers towards the Pilot of that unfortunate flight 8303.

The Federal Minister for Aviation, Mr. Ghulam Sarwar Khan accused Civil Aviation Authority for providing fake licenses to the pilots based on nepotism. The Minister for Aviation presented a report to Senate Secretariat withholding information and action plan against the 466 fake degree holders in the national airline of Pakistan. The ministry told the Senate about a policy for a verification of employees during probationary period. The employees will be confirmed after their detailed educational verification.

The Ministry would take strict actions against the applicants providing fake degree and details. The Ministry assured of taking strict measures taken after the judgement of Supreme Court of Pakistan. There never had been any policy of verification of educational documents within 90 days in PIA.

The stats show if there had been a streamlined verification system in PIA, many unfortunate incidents could have been avoided and it seems as the sole reason of PIA failure despite of having the operational capital.