Senate Committee Quizzes CAA Over Wrapping Of Baggage At Airports
The Senate Panel on Aviation has expressed its reservations over the wrapping of baggage at different national airports while quizzing officials of the Civil Aviation Authority regarding the practice.
Committee Chairman Mushaidullah Khan in his remarks to a Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) during a meeting of the panel stated that the whole project seemed ambiguous and it appeared that some influential persons were benefiting from this practice.
The committee chairman said that no airport in the world had made the wrapping of baggage necessary. He asked the CAA officials the reasons for starting this project and who had backed the idea.
The committee was of the view that the handling of baggage was the domain of the Pakistan International Airlines (PIA) and not the CAA.
CAA officials apprised the committee that the authority’s ‘director commercial’ had executed this project, and the project related to the Islamabad Airport was handed over to the Master Retailer through a bidding process according to the Public Procurement Regulations (PPRA).
When the committee insisted on seeing a copy of the documents regarding the bidding process, officials of the aviation authority failed to produce documents of the bidding process for Islamabad International Airport.
The CAA officials informed the committee that the cost of wrapping of baggage was Rs220, but later the management decided to reduce it to Rs50 due to growing concerns of the passengers.
Committee member Senator Kakar pointed out that by changing the rates, the CAA had violated the rules and regulations of the PPRA, adding that no one could change the rates in their own capacity, and for this purpose fresh tendering was required.
The committee suggested that the Federal Investigation Agency should investigate the whole matter and it would be discussed in the upcoming meeting.
The author is a reporter based in Islamabad.