KARACHI: A senior official of the Pakistan International Airlines (PIA) has resigned claiming that the management manipulated a Senate committee and did not present a clear picture of the airline’s losses in the current year, it was learnt on Friday.

According to sources in the airline, Director Customer Services Tabassum A. Qadir tendered her resignation via email to PIA chief Bernd Hildenbrand on Thursday while the Senate committee, that had allegedly been presented the “manipulated” figures a day earlier, was still in the airline’s offices.

The three-member committee headed by Syed Muzaffar Hussain Shah of the Pakistan Muslim League-Functional with retired Gen Abdul Qayoom of the PML-Nawaz and Farhatullah Babar of the Pakistan Peoples Party held meetings at the PIA offices in the city on Wednesday and Thursday. They were briefed and given presentations regarding PIA’s finances.

In her resignation, Ms Qadir criticised the “politically influenced” premier service which she claimed would not sustain owing to its negative financial impact.

She also suggested that the PIA should stop operating on the New York route which was making a big loss.

Among other things, she said that the PIA was going in the wrong direction and the planning did not align with the ground reality. She said that the Board of Directors and management had no synergy at all. She added that there was a tug of war going on between the board and management.

Ms Qadir, who was earning more than Rs1 million every month, said she was not in the PIA for any material or monetary gains.

She said she was unable to perform in this “toxic environment” and was resigning effective Feb 2017, after spending 120 days with the organisation.

PIA spokesperson Danyal Gilani confirmed to Dawn that Ms Qadir had resigned.

However, despite repeated attempts to make contact, Ms Qadir could not be reached.

Published in Dawn, January 7th, 2017

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