Senate panel calls for increase in PIA employees’ pension

PIA official says Rs3b is annually spent on medical expenses of retired workers

Waqas Ahmed October 03, 2019
A Pakistan International Airline carrier. PHOTO: REUTERS

ISLAMABAD: The Senate Standing Committee on Aviation on Wednesday requested for an increase in pension of the Pakistan International Airlines (PIA) employees. It also sent the matter of alleged harassment of the PIA staff to the women harassment committee of the institution.

The committee, chaired by the convener Senator Shaheen Khalid Butt, was informed that the PIA was spending about Rs3 billion annually on providing medical facilities to its retired employees.

A PIA official said that about 60 per cent retired employees were using the medical facility, adding employees were entitled to get lifetime medical facility on PIA account.

He also said that the PIA Board of Directors (BoD) proposed a 36 per cent increase in pension for the retired. However, he said the board keeping in view of the financial health of the organisation had agreed to increase the pension of the retired employees by 15 per cent.

The committee asked PIA BoD to again take up the case of a 36 per cent increase in pension and examine the pension structure of other corporations and look into federal government employee’s pension structure.   He further said the employees drawing a pension for over 30 years have been given 25 per cent increase, for over 20 years by 20 per cent, over 10, 15 per cent and employees drawing a pension for less than 10 years were given 10 per cent rise.

He said that employees had been given provident funds and gratuity facilities on their retirement, while other corporations were giving only one facility.

On an inquiry, the official said that the PIA was planning to start flight operation for the United States. Currently, he said the PIA had 12th Boeing 777 and after inducting two more planes the operation would be started flights for the US. He said the number of flights for Saudi Arabia had been increased while the PIA was also planning to start flight operation for the Far East.

On lady officer identified as Sana Waheed's complaint of alleged harassment, the committee referred the case to the women committee of the institution. It was highlighted that “the PIA didn’t take effective measures in the wake of the incident.”

(With additional input from APP.)

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