Fake Degrees, Conflict Of Interest: Supreme Court Summons PM Abbasi as ‘CEO of AirBlue Airline’

The Chief Justice remarked that being prime Minister and President/CEO of Air blue, a private airline, at the same time was a grave conflict of interest.

May 10, 2018 (DESPARDES/PKONWEB) — Chief Justice of Pakistan Mian Saqib Nisar on Thursday, summoned heads of all Pakistani airlines as well Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi to appear in the next hearing on Saturday at the top court’s registry in Karachi.

Justice Nisar was hearing a case pertaining to fake degrees of commercial pilots– 24 pilots and 67 crew-members belonging to the national carrier PIA were found to be holding fake degrees, the Director of Civil Aviation Authority informed the top court.

The Chief Justice then directed the heads of Pakistan International Airlines, AirBlue Limited, Serene Air and Shaheen Air International to personally appear before the bench.

“Isn’t it a matter of clash of interests?” Justice Nisar asked when told that the prime minister is also the head of the AirBlue airline. “Shahid Khaqan Abbasi will have to appear in person in the capacity of a chief executive officer and not a premier,” the top judge remarked.

“We summon the CEO of Air Blue,” the CJP ordered.

“He will present himself as the chief of Air Blue and not as the prime minister,” Justice Nisar said, adding that the issue is a grave conflict of interest. “The chiefs of PIA, Serene, Shaheen and Air Blue are all summoned,” he added.

The chief justice, who was heading a three-member bench, said that he was issuing notices to heads of all Pakistani airlines as the matter has been pending for the last four months and reports in this regard have not been submitted as yet.

During the hearing, CAA Director Nasir Ali Shah told the court that the authority has received the reports on pilots’ degrees from Shaheen International Airline and Serene Air today in Karachi, while the report of AirBlue was received on Wednesday.

Talking about PIA, Ali Shah said that degrees of 1,972 people were verified while 24 pilots were found to be holding fake degrees. 17 have resigned and left while 7 have a stay order from the court, the court was told.

Lawyers possessing fake degrees

Later during the hearing, the chief justice took suo motu notice of lawyers holding fake degrees and sought a report on the issue form all bar councils within a month.

The apex court also issued a notice to the Higher Education Commission, directing the officials to cooperate with bar councils on the issue of degrees verification.

The chief justice observed that there were so many people who neither had license of bars nor degrees of Bachelor in Law and Legislation but appearing before the courts.

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