KARACHI: The Sindh High Court on Tuesday sought the report of the Aircraft Accident and Investigation Board (AAIB) by Oct 15 regarding the 2016 ATR aircraft crash.

A two-judge bench headed by Justice Mohammad Ali Mazhar observed that in case of a further delay in submission of the report, the secretary of the aviation division would be summoned for an explanation.

When the matter came up for hearing on Tuesday, the deputy attorney general along with an official of the aviation division submitted a statement and mentioned certain reasons for the delay in the investigation report of the ATR crash and sought 45 days for completion of investigation and submission of the report.

The aviation division in the statement stated that the final draft of the investigation report of PK-661 was sent to the accredited representative including the Bureau of Enquiry and Analysis for Civil Aviation Safety (BEA) of France, Transportation Safety Board (TSB) of Canada and National Transportation Safety Board (NTBS) of the USA in May in accordance with the international obligations on all the signatory states to the ICAO convention.ARTICLE CONTINUES AFTER AD

After completion of two months to review the draft, the AAIB received the responses from the BEA and TSB in July, but the scope of participation of the NTSB was complicated and additionally there were several restrictions on working and travelling due to Covid-19, thus response from the NTSB was delayed and received last month, it maintained.

It further said that all the responses required reconciliation on few technical findings and relevant recommendations of the report and sought further time.

The petition was filed after an Islamabad-bound flight of Pakistan International Airlines had crashed near Abbottabad after it took off from Chitral on December 7, 2016 in which 42 passengers and crew, including singer-turned-preacher Junaid Jamshed and his wife, lost their lives.

Impleading the PIA, CAA and others as respondents, the petitioner argued that there were various incidents where ATR planes of PIA had crashed in which a large number of precious lives were lost and pleaded for a judicial inquiry to fix responsibility on the officials responsible for it, prosecute them and order compensation to the legal heirs of the victims.

LG elections

The same bench on Tuesday directed the Election Commission of Pakistan to conduct the local government elections in Sindh within 120 days.

A special secretary of the ECP in his statement submitted that it was the duty of the ECP to conduct the LG elections within 120 days after the expiry of the LGs’ term and it was fully committed to conduct the elections within the stipulated period subject to the provision of notifications regarding number of seats/constituencies and requisite maps, etc or amendment in the relevant law.

Disposing of the petition, the bench directed the ECP to hold LG elections in the province within 120 days in accordance with law.