Essential Services Act imposed in Pakistan International Airlines to ensure uninterrupted operations

May 29, 2024

Rawalpindi [Pakistan], May 30 : In a move aimed at ensuring uninterrupted airline operations, the government has invoked the Pakistan Essential Services (Maintenance) Act, 1952, granting Pakistan International Airlines (PIA) authority to take punitive measures against employees who defy lawful directives, as reported by ARY News.
The imposition of the Essential Services Act, mandated by the Ministry of Interior, is effective for a duration of six months, according to official notification.
Under the purview of this act, any employee found contravening lawful orders issued during the course of their employment, or attempting to incite disobedience among peers, will face disciplinary action.
Furthermore, the act extends to employees who, without reasonable justification, abandon their duties, absent themselves from work, refuse to perform assigned tasks, or depart from designated work areas specified in official orders, without prior consent from the appropriate authority.
According to the notification, individuals found guilty of violating this act are subject to imprisonment for a term extending up to one year, in addition to potential fines, according to ARY News.
This development comes on the heels of earlier reports in May, indicating progress in the privatisation process of PIA. Eight companies submitted bids by the May 17 deadline for expressions of interest in the privatisation of the national carrier.
Sources familiar with the matter revealed that the pre-qualification process for potential bidders is slated to commence imminently. Shortlisted companies will receive detailed information about PIA during this phase, with expectations for the pre-qualification process to conclude by the end of May.
Noteworthy is the diverse array of companies that submitted bids, including Shineji Company of China, Fly Jinnah, Airblue Limited, Jiri International Pvt Ltd, Younis Brothers Holdings Consortium, Pak Ethanol Consortium, and Blue World City Consortium, ARY News reported.