LAHORE  -  The National Accountability Bureau (NAB) and Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) have sought reply from PIA management over delay in Safari flight a couple of days back.

The airline management believes that delay was due to bad weather on the day of incident. Sources privy to the development said that CAA DG was unaware of the flight schedule and he had to face criticism of the passengers after landing at Skardu airport. Sources claimed that PIA chief commercial officer (CCO) Bilal Munir, general manager passenger sales Farhan Sami Ullah and general manager brand Abdullah were onboard but they skipped from the CIP Lounge when a foreigner intercepted CAA DG considering him a PIA official and came down hard on him.

The CAA DG is of the view that PIA senior officers onboard with him were supposed to respond the questions of the lady passengers since scheduling of the flight was their subject and not of the DG.

It is worth-mentioning here that Supreme Court of Pakistan has already taken Suo Moto notice of the incident and has sought report from PIA CEO within 48 hours.

At the same time NAB Chairman justice (Retd) Javed Iqbal has also taken notice of the incident and directed NAB’s Rawalpindi and Gilgit DGs to hold an inquiry into the happening. The chairman showed his concerns about the illegal Safari flight, its delay and treatment given to the passengers at Skardu airport.

The NAB chairman has also sought report from the former chief executive of PIA who sold airline plane abroad on throwaway price. The NAB chairman said that action would be taken against the officers involved in the crime. He said, “PIA is a national asset and it is our collective responsibility to take care of it”. He was of the view that not only the output of the national flag carrier was not as per expectations of the nation but also its resources were being used ruthlessly. He pledged to stop malpractices being exercised in the PIA.

Sources in the national flag carrier informed that CEO of the airline has directed its management to prepare report supposed to be submitted in Supreme Court of Pakistan on Thursday (today) and mention bad weather as main factor behind delay in flight.

On the other hand, a senior PIA officer refuted the ground of the airline for delay saying that all northern area flights were operated early morning to avoid bad weather. He said that clouds mostly appear in the sky after rising of the sun due to which visibility becomes poor. Keeping in view formation of the clouds, these flights are operated early morning and fly back after stay of one hour but flight in question was delayed by four to five hours.

DG CAA has also sought reports from managers of Islamabad and Skardu airports so that responsibility could be fixed and to establish that for what extent weather played its role in delay of the flight in question.