Pakistan’s aviation authority has suspended 15 more pilots for possessing dubious licenses, taking the number of those taken off duty for flying with fake credentials in the country to 93, according to a media report on Saturday.
They were suspended by the Aviation Division on Friday.
They are among the 262 pilots, who were grounded and put under investigation by the Aviation Ministry last month, for possessing suspicious licences, according to the Dawn newspaper.
The licences of 28 other pilots have already been cancelled.
Abdul Sattar Khokhar, Spokesman for the Aviation Division, said a total of 262 pilots were identified as possessing fake licences by the Board of Inquiry and grounded immediately after identification on the instructions of the government.
He said out of these 262 pilots, the federal Cabinet had approved cancellation of the licences of 28.
These 28 pilots will not be able to undertake any flying duty and their licences have been cancelled after proper legal procedures under which the pilots were given an opportunity of hearing.
The matter was twice deliberated by the Cabinet before the decision.
The process of verification of licences of 93 pilots has been initiated, while the investigation of the remaining 141 cases is expected to be completed within one week.
Mr. Khokhar, who is also the senior joint secretary, said the entire process of scrutiny and validation followed by necessary disciplinary action was being closely monitored and personally supervised by Minister for Aviation Ghulam Sarwar Khan.
Meanwhile, Serene Air, a private airliner, has stopped paying salaries to its pilots and first officers who have been identified as possessing fake licences.
The human resource department of the airline informed them that they would not be paid from June 29 till the issue was resolved.
Earlier, the Aviation Division had provided a list of 10 pilots of the private airline having fake licences.
Of the 10 pilots, three had already left the airline, while the remaining have been grounded, the report said.