The federal government has ordered the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) to explain the rationale behind its letter sent to Pakistan International Airlines (PIA) earlier this week.
The letter from the Additional Director Operations CAA to PIA’s Safety and Quality Assurance Department stated that the pilot of the ill-fated PIA flight PK-8303 ignored repeated instructions from the Air Traffic Controller (ATC) that led to the crash.
The letter further asked PIA to take measures to ensure that such a situation does not emerge in the future.
On 22 May, ATC had warned the pilot of the plane’s unusually high speed and altitude before its final approach. However, the pilot did not heed ATC’s warnings, according to the letter.
The federal government is of the view that CAA should have provided this information to the 4-member inquiry board investigating the crash rather than sending it on its own to the PIA.
In a press briefing held in Lahore, the Aviation Minister, Ghulam Sarwar Khan, said:
We have sought an explanation from the CAA official (for writing a letter to PIA implying that the pilot of the PK-8303 flight did not follow the instructions of ATC). As long as the inquiry report is not finalized, the official in question should not have spoken up (publicly). Whatever the official/CAA had to say should have been told to the four-member inquiry board probing the crash.
The Minister concluded that the investigation report of the PK-8303 crash will be presented in an upcoming session of the National Assembly.