Plight of PIA pensioners
PIA pensioners have received no increase in pensions for the last four years, although the government grants its employees increase in pensions every year.
This is because the government directive of increase in pension is not applicable to PIA retirees whose pension increase is approved by the board of directors of PIA.
There is a written commitment in the form of an admin order which states that pensions will be increased whenever a raise in salaries of the serving employees is announced.
This policy is not being implemented.
Ever since the policy was promulgated by PIA in July 2003, no increase was allowed till 2009. For six years there was no increase in pensions whereas serving employees continued to receive raise in their salaries.
It is now over four years that pensioners and widows have been ignored despite numerous requests to the PIA management by all sections of employees’ associations and unions.
The cost of living is rising every day and it is not possible for pensioners and widows to pull on with their meagre incomes.
The officers and staff who retired before 2003 receive on an average a negligible amount of Rs5,500 a month. The widows receive Rs.2,500.
We request opinion-makers and the government to look into the plight of PIA pensioners and recommend to the government to intervene and ask the PIA board to finalise an increase in pensions at the earliest.
In the meantime, we continue to pray for an early turnaround of the airline and hope it measures up to the expectations of travellers and common citizens of the country.
HEMAYET ALLY KHAN
Society of Former PIA Officers (Rgd)