According to sources, a pilot of the Pakistan International Airlines (PIA) blackmailed higher authorities when he was reportedly asked to maintain physical distancing. The pilot threatened to boycott, sources said.
However, the PIA’s CEO, Air Marshal Arshad Malik, has appointed some new pilots on contract basis, and asked the ‘annoyed’ pilot to correct himself.
It is worth noting that two pilots of the PIA who recently flew back from Canada have been confirmed to have contracted the novel coronavirus and shifted to a private in Lahore for treatment, according to Punjab Minister for Health Yasmin Rashid.
پائلٹ کی بلیک میلنگ، قرنطینہ کرنے پر ڈیوٹی سے انکار۔CEO PIA ارشد ملک کا کرارا جواب۔ کانٹریکٹ پائلٹس کو بھرتی کرلیا۔ ہر طرف مافیا ہے۔سب کا علاج ہوگا!
— Afzal Khan (@AfzalKhan_001) April 7, 2020
“The coronavirus tests of two PIA pilots and three other members of the crew on a flight that recently flew back from Canada were carried out and the two pilots have tested positive for the virus,” Rashid told the media on Monday morning.
“The two pilots have been shifted to a private hospital in Lahore for treatment where their condition is getting better. The other three crew members have been told to self-isolate themselves in line with international protocols on the virus,” Rashid added.
The PIA had on Sunday suspended its operations from Karachi, rejecting reports that its pilots from a flight from Britain had contracted the coronavirus.
In a statement issued Sunday, the national carrier clarified its views on quarantining its aviation staff in Karachi. “The PIA is strictly abiding by the instructions issued by the Government of Pakistan,” its spokesperson Abdullah Khan said.
“The instructions include measures related to disinfecting the airplane as well as the crew’s health and safety,” Khan added, noting that the federal government’s instructions were being followed at all airports in the country.
The incident that took place at Karachi airport was “against the instructions issued by the Government of Pakistan on aviation staff”, he said, adding that three hours prior to the plane with no passengers was scheduled to arrive from London, all officials had been informed.