ISLAMABAD: Minutes after the federal government placed PIA under the Mandatory Service Act, employees of the national airlines announced shutting down operations from Tuesday evening.
“We are ready for negotiations. It is unbelievable that the government promulgated the Mandatory Services Act despite our ongoing protest,” Sohail Baloch, head of Joint Action Committee,” told media persons at PIA headquarters in Karachi.
“Rest assured we will not fly from tomorrow 7pm. There is no way we are going to let the government privatize the PIA,” he said.
“Our sit-in will continue as per schedule. However, we are open to talks,” Baloch added. “We are also ready if government resorts to baton-charge.”
According to the new act, all PIA unions stand dissolved with immediate effect.
Employees of Pakistan International Airlines (PIA) are staging a ‘token protest’.
The PIA employees kept the administration offices closed against a bill that recently sailed through the National Assembly, converting the airlines into a public limited company.
On January 29, the government had announced to halt the process of finding a strategic partner for the airlines, urging the PIA employees to call off their strike.
The government had also assured that rights of PIA employees would be protected and their perks and privileges, salaries, and gratuity would never be affected in the new revival plan for the national flag carrier.