Unusual flights by Balochistan government’s plane have been seen during the incumbent caretaker setup, as the plane made 31 flights in October, stayed in the air for more than 30 hours, and the practice continues in November as well.

Provincial Information Minister Jan Achakzai told this correspondent that the aircraft is being used in the service of the people of Balochistan, and the caretaker chief minister should be appreciated on this count.

According to the aviation sources, in the month of October 2023, Balochistan government’s Learjet 45XR aircraft made a record breaking 31 flights between Quetta, Islamabad, Turbat, Multan and Karachi. In which 15 flights were made only between Karachi and Quetta.

Earlier, the aircraft completed 10 flights in September 2023. The aircraft also made international flights including Quetta-Baku, and Istanbul, Baku. The plane stayed in Istanbul from Sept 4 to 22. The plane reached Quetta from Karachi on August 13 and stayed there for 22 days. In July, flights between Islamabad, Karachi and Quetta took place for four times only. On July 25, the plane reached Karachi airport and stayed there for about 18 days. Also in June 2023, the aircraft made 23 flights to Quetta, Gwadar, Karachi, Islamabad and Sukkur. In May, the aircraft made 21 flights between Quetta, Baku, Istanbul, Islamabad, Gwadar, Sukkur and Quetta. It made five flights between Dubai, Karachi, Quetta and Islamabad in April. In March, it made five flights between Quetta, Gwadar, Turbat, Karachi and Dubai. On February 15 this year, the aircraft flew from Quetta to Quetta for 42 minutes. When contacted, Provincial Information Minister Balochistan Jan Achakzai said the Balochistan government plane is also an air ambulance. It was used for transportation of bodies of martyred labourers from Turbat to Multan, Muzaffargarh and different parts of Punjab and Sukkur in two separate incidents. According to Achakzai, the aircraft was also used in the Mastung tragedy, when seriously injured people were transported to Karachi for treatment. He said the government plane was for service of people, and it was never avoided when required. He said that even in the latest wave of Congo virus, it was a standby facility for doctors and paramedical staff undergoing treatment in Karachi. He said the plane took international flight for repair in Istanbul. The Balochistan government bought the plane from a Canadian company in October 2012 with Rs1.7 billion. The modern aircraft was registered with the Civil Aviation Authority on Nov 14, 2012. In those days, the province was ruled by Nawab Aslam Raisani. Interestingly, when the aircraft was purchased, the governor and chief minister of Balochistan already had two jets.


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2023-11-11

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