The Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) on Tuesday temporarily suspended the operations of a privately-owned airline, Bhoja Air on the directions of the defence ministry.
The move came a day before the Peshawar High Court takes up the cases of the deadly crashes of Airblue and Bhoja Air flights in 2011 and 2012, respectively.
Initially, Bhoja Air had four aircraft of which, one crashed in April this year, one was grounded earlier when an inspection team found it to be out of order and one is currently under inspection, CAA spokesperson Pervez George told The Express Tribune. “Now, Bhoja Air is left with one aircraft,” George said, adding that the CAA suspended the airline’s operations in public interest.
Another top official of the CAA also confirmed to The Express Tribune that the authority’s Air Transport Wing conveyed the decision to Bhoja Air in a letter on Monday. “The airline should have been grounded immediately after the crash, last month,” he added.
Neither a show-cause notice was issued to Bhoja Air nor was a personal hearing offered by the CAA prior to suspending their operations, the official said.
According to CAA and international aviation rules, it is mandatory to suspend operations of an airline operating with less than three state-of-the-art aircraft.
To a question, the official said that suspension is not permanent because Bhoja Air, according to reports, was getting two more aircraft, in which case the suspension order will be set aside automatically.
Published in The Express Tribune, May 30th, 2012.