Islamabad, Feb. 5 (ANI): The United States (US) has imposed a ban on direct flights to and from Pakistan into the US after Islamabad's refusal to share complete data of it nationals traveling abroad with the US post 9/11, Pakistan's Defence Secretary Athar Ali has informed the Public Accounts Committee.
Ali told the PAC of the National Assembly on Wednesday that the government had purchased a Boeing 777 for direct flights to the US, but that could not happen and all the flights to the US had a stopover in the United Kingdom, the Daily Times reported.
The committee took up an audit para regarding uneconomical and reckless purchase of eight aircrafts resulting in the extra expenditure of Rs 13.26 billion.
The audit authorities had told the committee that the Pakistan International Airlines (PIA) had hired the services of consultants at a cost of $78,000 but their advice had not been taken before the purchase.
The PAC settled the audit para without giving a clear explanation of whether the decision taken by the PIA management was right or wrong. However, it directed the PIA management to avoid indulging in such imprudent expenditure.
PIA Managing Director Ijaz Haroon argued that a surge in oil prices was the main reason for the increase in PIA's expenditures. (ANI)