ISLAMABAD -  The Supreme Court was asked to direct the authorities to produce safety record of PIA inland and foreign flights and purchase agreements of ATR aircraft with the A320 airbus.

On Wednesday, an ATR plane, PK-661, flew from Chitral airport to Islamabad but crashed in a mountainous area near Havelian due to a technical glitch, killing 47 people including crew members.

Islamabad Bar Association President of Muhammad Tayyab on Thursday filed a petition making the federation through the secretary Ministry of Defence, the PIA chairman and the director-general of the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) as respondents.

The petitioner through his counsel Babar Awan said that the CAA and the national flag-carrier were bound to ensure the protection of passengers travelling on domestic and international flights of the PIA.

He said that due to a grave mismanagement and political inductions, the PIA is rated as the “third worst air services provider” in the world and suffered 67 lethal incidents so far killing 1,036 citizens. He said that in terms of the death toll, the PIA is the “fifth worst airline” in the world.

According to a PIA report, 48 passengers lost their lives in the plane crash. It said that the ATR planes were containing a manufacturing defect and their engines were considered dangerous for flights in coastal, hilly and dusty areas as they catch fire quickly. At present, ATRs are being used for flights to Gilgit-Baltistan, Chitral, Gwadar, Bahawalpur and Sukkur.

The petitioner said that the CAA director general put a conditional ban on ATR flights in September, 2016, after receiving endless complaints. The petitioner contended that every unit of the ATR should be overhauled as per the international standard procedure.

The petitioner also said that after first crash of an ATR aircraft in 2007, the defence secretary had proposed not to buy ATR aircraft but directors nominated by former prime minister Shaukat Aziz exerted pressure to buy 12 more ATRs. He said that of the 12, one ATR plane crashed while landing in Pakistan. However, other ATRs were flown recklessly without adhering to fundamental rights and security of people, putting lives of thousands of citizens at risk.

The petitioner said that on September 20, 2016, the CAA director general reportedly put the conditional ban on ATR flights and all the aircraft were grounded, but high-ups in the government again pressured the CAA director general to allow flight of ATR aircraft.

It said that corrupt practice was also employed in the matter agreements with A320 aircraft, causing a loss of billions of rupees to the national exchequer and irreparable loss to thousands of families who lost their dear ones.