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PIA to fetch stranded Pakistani passengers from China

ISLAMABAD : The Pakistan International Airline (PIA) has offered its services to rescue Shaheen Air International’s passengers stranded in China for over a week.

The newly-appointed chief executive officer of PIA Musharraf Rasool directed to send a special plane of national flag carrier to China in order to bring back Pakistani passengers marooned in the port city of China Guangzhou.

On the other hand, the foreign office of Pakistan informed that they are in contact with stranded passengers in China and making every possible effort to facilitate passengers as their visas have expired.

Earlier on Sunday, Shaheen Airlines has contacted Pakistan International Airlines (PIA) to make arrangements for the rescue of more than 300 Pakistanis who are stranded in China’s Guangzhou city.

The passengers had to reach Pakistan through a private airline on July 29 but they were left stranded after Shaheen Air flight delayed due to dispute a with the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA).

Some of the passengers have also reportedly fallen sick as they continue to await their return.

On August 3, chief justice of Pakistan Saqib Nisar ordered Malik Ahsaan Sehbai, the owner of Shaheen Airline, to appear before the court on Tuesday, while a three-judge bench was hearing the suo moto case of stranded Pakistani passengers in China.

The chief justice ordered Shaheen Air to ensure all stuck passengers are fetched back to Pakistan before Monday.

The bench also instructed the CAA to prepare a report on the condition of the plane sent to fetch the passengers from China.

Following a conflict over nonpayment of arrears totaling over Rs.1.5 billion by the Shaheen Air International (SAI), the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) suspended the flight operation, leaving as many as 300 Pakistanis stranded in the Chinese port city of Guangzhou.

On the contrary, the regional director of Shaheen Air apprised the Supreme Court bench that all flights except Saudi Airline were cancelled on July 29 at the airport of Guangzhou, due to which passengers could not come back to Pakistan.

The airline’s international operations — except Haj flights — were suspended several days ago by the CAA owing to the mounting debt.



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