Pakistan International Airlines' former MD arrested for 'illegal' hiring

Sayani was appointed on a monthly salary of USD 20,000 along with other perks and privileges that caused huge loss to the national exchequer.

Published: 18th October 2020 03:38 PM  |   Last Updated: 18th October 2020 03:38 PM   |  A+A-

Pakistan airlines

In this March 7, 2011, file photo, a Pakistan International Airlines passenger jet is parked on the tarmac at a military base in Makassar, Indonesia. (Photo | AP)


ISLAMABAD: Pakistan International Airlines' former managing director Aijaz Haroon has been arrested on charges of illegal appointment of a Pakistani-American to a senior position at the national flag carrier at a huge salary package in violation of human resource department rules, according to a media report on Sunday.

The Federal Investigation Agency on Saturday also arrested PIA's former human resource director Mohammad Haneef Pathan along with Haroon, The Dawn News reported, quoting FIA Deputy Director Abdur Rauf Shaikh.

An FIR has been registered against the two former officials on charges of illegal appointment of Salim Sayani as deputy managing director (DMD) in PIA in 2009 in "clear violation of PIA HR rules", the report said.

Sayani has also been booked in the case.

Sayani was appointed on a monthly salary of USD 20,000 along with other perks and privileges that caused huge loss to the national exchequer.

Sharing details of the perks and privileges, Shaikh said apart from the salary in US dollars, Sayani was allowed to stay at a five-star hotel for three months and his family was also provided accommodation in Dubai on PIA's expense.

The "illegal appointment of Sayani in PIA for a period of two years caused a loss between Rs 200 million and Rs 250 million to the national exchequer", the report quoted Shaikh as saying.

The arrests were made after an initial inquiry that traced violations of regulations for the appointment of DMD in the national flag carrier.

Nor any advertisement was published in newspapers before the appointment, neither was any other candidate invited to complete the hiring process in accordance with PIA rules.

The inquiry also revealed that the human resource department failed to adopt any procedure to ascertain market-based salary.

According to the FIA, the appointment of Sayani was made in clear violation of PIA Act 1956, and even the approval of the then federal government was not obtained for the appointment as per record.

Last year, the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) had arrested Haroon, who was also chairman of the Overseas Cooperative Society, for allegedly selling a dozen of plots to fake allottees.

He allegedly used fake bank accounts to launder Rs 144 million for Omni Group, the report said.


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