Employees of the national carrier of the country, Pakistan International Airlines (PIA), have announced that they will have planned to go on a countrywide protest against the rapidly deteriorating conditions and
erroneous policies of the company from the 18th of November.
The call for protest was made by the action committee of the employees’ union, strongly criticising the incompetence of the management, particularly the recently signed $700 million contract with a US firm for the supply of spares,
consumable material, chemical and other items. The employees are demanding an immediate withdrawal of the controversial agreement signed with the American organisation, Transworld, and have also threatened to go on strike if their demands are not met.
“We are going on a protest from November 18 for an indefinite period against faulty decisions of the PIA management,” said Shaukat Jamshed, president Society of Aircraft Engineers. “We are compelled to launch the protest as monthly
loss of PIA has gone up to Rs2 billion from Rs1 billion.”
He said all PIA employees unions, including Air League, Pakistan Airline Pilots Association (PALPA), Unity Union, Pakistan International Airlines Corporation Employees (PIACE) and PIA CBA had jointly decided to stand up against
the downfall of the organization.
Over 20,000 employees are currently working at PIA and their refusal to report to their respective duties will cause threatening damages to the organization. Shaukat Jamshed has already clarified that the over 20,000 employees
would not jam the PIA machinery by going on the strike but would hold demonstrations and sit-ins.
“But if our demands are not met, the employees will go on a strike in the second phase,” he warned the top management.
PIA is currently operating with 30 out of 39 planes, with nine aircrafts have been grounded due to unavailability of spares that were to be supplied by the US firm under its contract. PIA’s flight schedule has been badly affected
by the grounding of these nine planes and the employees’ union has strongly criticized this controversial deal with Transworld. On the other hand, PIA spokesman, Sultan Ahmed, has denied such reports and has cited that only two planes have been grounded as
per the routine maintenance work.