Pakistan International Airlines (PIA)has decided to take action against news outlets running a defamatory campaign against the management of the airline. The airline has sent a legal notice to three channels which ran a story about the CEO of PIA.
Sources in PIA legal department told that a legal notice was issued to Jaag, Channel 24 and Capital TV. These news channels reported that PIA CEO Musharraf Rasool Cyan was stopped from flying abroad at Islamabad International Airport.
The sources added that Cyan had plans to travel to the IATA Annual General Meeting Summit in Sydney. But due to certain engagements in Pakistan, he was not able to travel.
PIA Spokesperson confirmed that the airline has issued a legal notice to three TV Channels under Section 8 of the Defamation Ordinance 2002, and Pakistan Penal Code 1860 in response to the false, libelous and defamatory statements telecasted through news programs and consequently, news publications. The notice was issued on June 1, 2018.
“The news program shared false and unverified news about the credentials of the CEO PIACL and restrictions on his travel abroad, with malafide and ulterior motives of attacking, inter alia, his integrity and character with the knowledge and purpose that if made the same would cause irreparable harm and damage to his reputation,” the notice stated.
PIA claims that certain elements were spreading baseless, false and frivolous propaganda to secure their personal interests by feeding fake news and unfortunately various media channels were being used as an instrument to spread a preposterous vilification campaign against the CEO PIA and consequently the national airline.
A lifetime of honesty, integrity and dedication has been tarnished through irresponsible and malicious reporting causing irreparable damage to the reputation of the CEO, said the notice.
The spokesperson also told that PIA has already instructed their legal counsels to invoke remedies available under PEMRA Ordinance 2002 against the news channels acting against the law and terms of their licenses.
Contrary to the fabricated news released by the channel, there is no restriction by Supreme Court on the travel of Dr. Cyan abroad, and the travel plan to Australia was to attend the IATA Annual General Meeting Summit in Sydney. The meeting is attended by all airline CEOs and PIA is one of its oldest members.
The tickets issued to him and his family are strictly in accordance with the travel entitlement available to the CEO PIA under the applicable Interline Tickets as per IATA Resolution 788. PIA does not fly to Australia, therefore, the ticket was issued on an Interline Partner Airline.
In a separate statement, PIA spokesperson denied a news item regarding an expensive Rolex wristwatch being figted to former Advisor to Prime Minister on Aviation Sardar Mehtab Ahmad Khan. The spokesperson said that PIA is already under serious financial constraints and cannot even think of giving gifts like expensive watches to anyone.
PIA held the farewell function at the Gun Club, a respectable location and not a five-star hotel as the reports allege, inviting only a select few. He added,
The two items presented as gifts to the Advisor were a plane tail model (made out of plastic) and a souvenir crafted by PIA the Engineering team, which was part of a blade of a scrapped 737 engine.
In addition, a tribute video was produced in-house. The rest is fiction and lies with malicious intent, confirmed the spokesperson.