Pakistan International Airlines (PIA) has found itself in the eye of a storm after many passengers accused one of its flights of taking VIPs on an 'air cruise' while making them wait for close to four hours.
Many passengers waiting for their flight at Skardu - a city in the Gilgit-Baltistan region of the country - were given boarding passes but said they kept waiting to get on a plane that had not even arrived. The intended plane was coming in from Islamabad and the flight time of 45 minutes stretched into several hours. According to a report in Pakistan-based Dawn, passengers were outraged and claimed that the plane meant for them had been diverted to take officials of Civil Aviation Authority on an aerial tour of K2, Nanga Parbat and other mountain peaks.
On the 16th July 2018, Pakistan International Airlines (#PIA) launched it "Air Safari" tour of the Karakoram Range which offers some of the most scenic views of the northern areas including K2.
— Mohammed Firaas (@raisinganchor) July 18, 2018
The passengers also said that while they were given boarding passes, they were not even permitted to make use of washrooms in the waiting room of PIA at the Skardu airport.
Accusing PIA of having no respect for customers and instead, catering to the whims of VIPs, many of the passengers also took to social media to vent their anger. “We have been held hostage for the past four hours.” a woman wrote on her account on Twitter.
PIA has not commented on the matter yet.