It takes a genius to come up with fantastic idea to turn around, an airline technically insolvent, over staffed, its revenues pilfered and more than half fleet grounded, that the solution lies in changing uniform of its flying crew etc. One hopes this initiative and brilliance of ‘Aviation Czar,’ is followed by Punjab Police, Sindh Police, Customs and Excise, NHA, FIA etc by announcing change in uniform for their operational staff, to improve their otherwise dismal performance.

PML-N’s choice of Shujaat Azeem, as Special Assistant and Advisor on Aviation, comes as no surprise. He served as a pilot to the former Lebanese PM, apart from running a private ground handling agency and has partnership in a construction company, all recommendations for running an Airline! Now he has been at the helm of both PIA and CAA since the departure of the former Chief Justice. Under his helm, PIA’s losses continue to rise, its performance dismal, indiscipline at a peak, human resources, going from bad to worse, and cronyism continuing to have a toll.

Employees hired with fake degrees, during 2007 to 2012, declared bogus by HEC not only continue to be on the payroll but are promoted and sent on foreign postings, in violation of PIA Rules, based on lame excuse that they have stay orders, which PIA deliberately fails to vacate because of connivance and politics of reconciliation between PPP and PML-N. Perhaps Gordon Bethune, a graduate from Abilene Christian University, who did an advanced management course from Harvard School of Business, a licensed Airframe and Power Plant engineer and a CPL with type ratings, who served as VP and GM Boeing Company, before taking over Continental Airlines in 1994, with stocks slashed to $2 and by 1997 he had them at $50, missed this brilliant idea, which is not mentioned in his book ‘From Worse to First,’ now recommended for students of Harvard etc.


Lahore, March 23.