Pakistan International Airlines (PIA) has barred its captains and first officers from fasting on flights during the holy month of Ramadan.
As per media reports, the administration of the national flag carrier has issued a safety alert ahead of Ramadan, under which pilots and cabin crews have been restrained from fasting during flights. The Chief of Flight Operations, Captain Arshad Khan, had issued a notification in this regard on Friday.
The circular added that the decision is in the best interest of its passengers, captains, and cabin crew. It read:
Majority of the Muslim countries’ airlines captains and crew members are not allowed to fast during flight.
As per the notification, fasting cabin crew members will not be allowed to board the flight, and such members are required to notify the administration in advance. In this regard, implementation from the captains and first officers of the Boeing 777, Airbus 320, and ATR aircraft will be mandatory.
There is no denying the usefulness of fasting, however, performing the duties on the flight while fasting can have adverse effects on health. The decision of the administration is aimed at protecting the staff from health problems. Flying can be a threat not only to the individual but also to everyone on board.
A spokesperson for the PIA also confirmed the development, saying that a mechanism is being laid out to ensure that no flight operates during Sehr and Iftar.