SHC stops PIA CEO Air Marshal Arshad Malik from working

DailyTimes  |  Jan 01, 2020

The Sindh High Court (SHC) on Tuesday stopped the Pakistan International Airlines (PIA) CEO Air Marshal Arshad Malik from performing his duties as the airline’s chief executive officer.

The petition stated Malik did not fulfil the educational requirements of the post neither did he have any relevant experience for the job. During proceedings of the case, the two-member bench issued directives to stop the PIA CEO from performing his functions. The court also stopped the airline from transferring, hiring or firing employees.

The high court also stopped the PIA from buying or selling assets. The bench said the national flag bearer could not sell assets worth over rupees one crore or make policies for the time being. The SHC had issued a notice to the deputy general to appear before the court on January 22 in relation to the case.

Prior to joining the PIA, Malik was serving as the Vice Chief of the Air staff. He is a graduate of the National Defence University (NDU) and qualified in Air Command and Staff Course from the US. Malik has served for more than 40 years in the Pakistan Air Force (PAF) before he was appointed as the airline’s chief executive officer. He was appointed as PIA chairman on October 11, 2018 by the federal government. On April 2, 2019, he was appointed the national flag carrier’s CEO.

Meanwhile, the Supreme Court (SC) on Tuesday issued directives to initiate scrutiny of educational degrees of Pakistan International Airlines (PIA) employees and ordered the authorities to submit a report after completing the verification process. The top court’s two-member bench headed by the Chief Justice Gulzar Ahmed also issued notices to summon Attorney General, PIA managing director and chairman of Higher Education Commission (HEC) in the next hearing. During the hearing related to the case filed against possession of fake degrees by the PIA workers, the lawyer told the apex court that the employees have received educational degrees from a private university of Azad Jammu and Kashmir (AJK) without attending a single class. The lawyer added the employees had also received departmental promotions on the basis of such degrees. The top court’s judge remarked that [AJK’s] Al-Khair University is just an exhibitory varsity as degrees were sold out without completing educational procedures. It seems the degrees were illegally possessed [by the PIA employees], whereas, the airline has also accepted the degrees from the private university [without carrying out verification process], the judge added. The administration of the national flag-carrier has been directed to ensure verification of educational degrees of its employees from the recognised institutions. Later, the hearing was adjourned until one month after ordering the concerned authorities to complete scrutiny of the educational degrees of PIA employees.

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