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ISLAMABAD: The former chief operating officer of PIA has challenged his dismissal in the Islamabad High Court (IHC).

In a petition, Zia Q. Qureshi claimed that PIA CEO Musharraf Rasool Cyan, whose appointment was declared void by the Supreme Court, scapegoated him to hide his own wrongdoing.

Earlier this month, the SC declared that Mr Cyan’s appointment “does not meet the requirements to be appointed CEO” and declared his appointment “illegal”.

A three-member bench led by Chief Justice Mian Saqib Nisar issued the declaration while hearing a case related to the privatisation of PIA. Mr Cyan dismissed Mr Qureshi’s contract on May 18, citing his ‘unsatisfactory performance’.

Mr Qureshi, however, said Mr Cyan was ‘vindictive’ towards him and the termination of his services was an act “contradictory to the fact based on my outstanding performance”.

He said that because he had performed well he was given additional charge as chief of corporate development in April, a month before he was fired.

He claimed his performance at PIA made a great deal of difference in terms of both survival and business improvement.

“I also noted that the transformation programme, despite having been approved as an integral part of the strategic business plan has been blocked by the CEO since December 2017 which has had very negative impact on the implementation of the business plan and the turnaround plan that I commenced and worked very hard on,” he stated.

He stated: “Mr Musharraf Rasool Cyan was aware that PIA submitted comprehensive submission to the Honorable Chief Justice of Pakistan setting out the excellent or rather outstanding performance of the new management.”

Published in Dawn, September 12th, 2018