PIA has decided to suspend its New York flight operations by December and the flights booking is curbed down to 50% only from Thursday.
“It is a failure of current CEO of PIA whose appointment has been challenged by 30 senators in Islamabad High Court (IHC)—said a senior PIA official anonymously.
An officer working in Lahore booking office said, “We have been told to stop conducting reservations for PIA flight PK-721 which operates from Lahore to New York on October 10”, which means you may not be able to book PIA flight to New York from October 10 onwards. The officer said flight PK-711 on October 7 is still available on the system—Nation reported.
According to the sources in the airline said New York route was incurring the loss of Rs450 million annually while unable to meet direct operational costs for the route. All is due to ill management and pathetic marketing policies by senior management of PIA. The route was provided to foreign airlines, those airlines were competing well and attracting more customers to them with a good meal, in-flight entertainment system, low fares, and customer focused crew members.
However, PIA bought B-777-LR for long-haul flights and increased ticket prices but with poor planning and management, it’s now the time to close the route.
There was a long dispute over the appointment of PIA CEO which was challenged in the IHC by 30 senators, advisor to PM said to be involved in appointing PIA CEO smashing on-merit appointment. Officials in the airline said government representatives have control over PIA board of directors in order to conduct hand-picked appointment.
PIA current CEO reportedly doesn’t meet the criteria of being CEO of an International Airline, he simply does not have required qualification and experience to lead the organization. The matter is still in the court about CEO’s credentials and the decision is pending.
When Mashud Tajwar PIA spokesperson was contacted he said flight operations of New York route has not been suspended so far nor was any order passed to close bookings. Regarding petition in the court, he didn’t comment and said the court will decide it.