ISLAMABAD: Taking suo motu notice over Transparency International Pakistan’s (TIP) allegations regarding financial irregularities in deals of Pakistan International Airlines (PIA), the Supreme Court issued summons to the airline’s Chairman Rao Qamar Suleman and fixed the hearing for the second week of October.
Heading the hearing, Chief Justice Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry converted the application of TIP as a petition under article 184 (3) of the Constitution.
According to TIP’s allegations, PIA had misappropriated finances in some of their deals.
The action was taken by the Supreme Court as TIP forwarded the request of PIA employees which was published in the English daily, The News, on November 19, 2011.
In the news item, PIA employees prayed to the chief justice to take a suo motu notice on the on-ground affairs of PIA, that the aircraft lease agreement had been finalised at a very high rate.
Around 1200 flights of PIA between August and November had been cancelled causing a loss of over Rs410 million. PIA had taken three engines on lease for $300 per hour each while its own engines which were ready for installation in Singapore and Amman were not being brought to justify the lease deal.
PIA had acquired two jumbos recently, but by spending the same amount of money several grounded aircraft could have been repaired for use. The employees had said that the contradictory figures submitted by the PIA chairman needed to be seriously examined.
Comments were sought from the PIA chairman, which were later sent to the applicant. After going through the comments submitted by PIA and the reaction received from TIP, the chief justice passed the order.
The order states:
“As PIA claims that no irregularity or illegality has been committed in purchasing and obtaining dry lease of aircrafts, while on the other hand Transparency International Pakistan has alleged serious illegality and irregularities in purchasing and obtaining lease by PIA. Therefore, it would be appropriate if this case is fixed in court and treated as a petition under article 184 (3) of the Constitution.”