Non-availability of seats in Business Class irks PIA engineers (Business Recorder (Pakistan))

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  • March 24, 2015
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Pakistan International Airlines (PIA) appears uncertain about abolishing intransigence from its highly privileged staff pilots and engineers, causing besmirch to the airline. This was the second time during last 45 days, when aircraft engineers left the insolvent national flag carrier in a fit of pique by refusing to perform duty in PK759 (LahoreJeddah) over nonavailability of seats in ‘Business Class’, resulting in flight delay for almost half an hour.
Sources said that PIA which was already reprimanded and penalised by General Authority of Civil Aviation (GACA) of Saudi Arabia over flight delays, may again face punishment from GACA, due to unwarranted scene created by two aircraft engineers of the airline. Moreover, sources said that several incidents were reported in the past where pilots had showed zerotolerance over nonavailability of seats in Business Class. Now, the same gesture was shown by the members of Society of Aircraft Engineers of Pakistan (SAEP).
“It is an incontrovertible fact that PIA management under the agreement signed with Pakistan Airline Pilots Association (PALPA) and SAEP is required to provide seats to onduty PALPA and SAEP members in Business Class,” sources said.
However, both engineers after the intervention of highups have consented to travel in the Economy Class, the sources maintained.
Moreover, sources said that GACA authority had recently penalised PIA and issued a strong reprimand over flight delays and this incident may also cost the airline, which was facing daily operational losses of around Rs450 million.
A spokesman for PIA, Hanif Rana, on being contacted by Business Recorder, confirmed the incident, saying that the two engineers refused to fly with flight PK759 over nonavailability of seats in Business Class. He also corroborated that the Airline as per agreement was bound to accommodate its pilots and engineers in Business Class, but the Airline due to nonavailability of seats in Business Class tried to adjust them in Economy Class, which jumbled the airline’s flight schedule.