Pakistan

ISLAMABAD – Pakistan International Airlines has initiated an inquiry against one of its pilots on Tuesday after a video of a Chinese passenger entering and exiting the cockpit of a PIA aircraft began circulating on the Internet.

The video shows a Chinese girl, accompanied by a crew member, entering and exiting the cockpit of flight PK-853, heading from Tokyo to Beijing, although it’s not clear whether the aircraft was on the ground or in the air.

The woman allegedly stayed inside the cockpit for over two hours, coming out only after the plane landed.

Sources said under civil aviation rules, unauthorised people were not allowed into the cockpit, especially during landing and takeoff. However, a person allowed by the captain, or authorised by the Civil Aviation Authority chief, could enter the cockpit while the aircraft was in flight.

After the national flag carrier was lampooned, PIA spokesperson Danyal Gilani said the airline authorities had seen the video aired on television channels and the “matter was being investigated”. He confirmed that the pilot in command of the flight was Capt Shahzad Aziz.

This is not the first time that PIA pilots and crew have been involved in incidents that have the potential to endanger passengers.

Last month, PIA launched an investigation against a senior pilot operating an Islamabad-to-London flight (PK-785) after he was accused of handing over the aircraft to an under-training pilot following take-off and taking a two-and-a-half-hour nap in the passenger compartment.

In December 2015, a PIA pilot faced an inquiry for allowing Reham Khan, the ex-wife of Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf Chairman Imran Khan, to sit in the cockpit during her journey to Lahore from London.