Stories about Bhoja Air

GermanWings crash: Blame the pilot or blame the industry?

Since the inception of free electronic media and social media, aviation accidents have become subject of great interest amongst the masses. For Pakistan, it was the Airblue Flight crash which took place in Margalla Hills, Islamabad five years ago. It was the worst aviation disaster in Pakistan aviation history followed by the Bhoja Air crash in 2012, which killed all 127 passengers on board. The first recorded accident in commercial aviation history was on August 2, 1919, when a Caproni Ca48 type aircraft crashed near Verona, killing all passengers aboard. Since then a number of aviation accidents have taken place, killing hundreds of people on board and on ...

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Mayday mayday, our daredevil pilot wants to fly through a thunderstorm!

Thai Air may have a very good air worthiness record both for their fleet and the flying staff. Being a Thai Air passenger on several occasions I have had no bad memories until I flew back to Islamabad on March 17th, 2014 from Manila via Bangkok. Thai Air is probably one of the few foreign airlines that still maintain daily flights from three cities in Pakistan; all western airlines including Singapore Airlines stopped flying into Pakistan for various reasons, almost a decade ago, Thai Air has been providing that necessary bridge to keep Pakistan connected to Asia. By making a code-share agreement ...

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Bash thy army the right way

Bashing the military is a favourite past time of the ones who feel they have been enlightened. Following this trend, an increasing number of people want to join this enlightened group, so they have taken to bashing the army too. The tool is a laptop; the location is a cosy house in Defence. The new army bashers however, in my humble view, need to know a thing or two before launching into a gallant bayonet charge. So I have decided to help them out and will now try to explain how to effectively bash the malicious military, or how to ...

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On board Shaheen Air: Emergency exit, anyone?

I recently had to make an official trip from Islamabad to Karachi and Shaheen Air turned out to be the only option given my meeting schedule. My misgivings about travelling on Shaheen (given its bad reputation) were further fuelled by news of the Bhoja Air crash near Rawalpindi – an incident that had happened only two days ago, in which all 121 passengers as well as crew members had lost their lives. With these worries on my mind, I boarded the Shaheen Air flight NL122, a Boeing 737 (same as the crashed Bhoja aircraft), on the morning of April 22, 2012. To the pilot’s credit, the ...

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AirBlue crash report: An expected waste

We love to be experts, be it speculation behind the reasons for an avalanche or an aviation disaster. But unfortunately some of our experts fail quite miserably. Their reflection on events and their opinions are not only shallow but unworthy of being called an ‘expert opinion’. The Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) has recently released the investigation report of the AirBlue crash. Now I must proclaim that my expertise in aviation accident investigation does not go beyond watching National Geographic’s investigations of air disasters. However, having watched multiple seasons of that series, I understand that the purpose of an investigation report is twofold. The ...

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The last few minutes on a crashing plane

They were headed for a destination; some for familiar places, others looking for new ventures. She must’ve been sitting on the aisle, slowly sipping a glass of coke, glancing at the in-flight entertainment every now and then. A toddler must’ve been on his first flight looking out the window amazed at the puffy white clouds outside his window. The crew may be behind the curtain, cracking jokes, stacking up food trays and fixing their attires. There might have a been a man in a suit, typing away corporate plans for his company for the next two quarters. A father may have ...

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Satisfied with TV coverage of the Bhoja Air crash?

As the Bhoja Air plane went up in flames on Friday evening, so did tempers within the Pakistani social media crowd. Along with the “RIP all victims of Bhoja Air crash” status updates on Facebook, there were angry tweets questioning why television channels aired the passenger list and why images of the crash site were being aired. It seemed that it was easier for people to direct their fury at the media for being “sensational, insensitive and unethical”. Some from the media circle, however, defended the coverage and retaliated by saying that the reporters were doing their jobs. This brings to light a few ...

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Bhoja Air crash: Where are our media ethics?

Hit by one colossal tragedy after the other, the people of Pakistan are heartbroken and disappointed. What could have been an averted disaster became the inevitable when Bhoja Air decided to fly its 40-year-old Boeing 737-200 for Rawalpindi on April 20, 2012. Boarded by newly married couples, children and their parents among others, at 5:05 pm from the Karachi airport, the inaugural flight came hurtling down towards the outskirts of Rawalpindi at around 6:46 pm on Friday. While I checked channels for updated reports and alerts on any survivors, I couldn’t help but notice how rash and obscenely inappropriate the local ...

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Bhoja Air crash: Hail to the sound bite addict!

Hours after the fiery death of 127 Bhoja Air passengers, our interior minister, hungering for sound bite-upon-sound bite, raced to the crash site. His getting there was so important that ambulances and rescue vehicles were forced to move aside and clear the route for his motorcade. Fortunately, either good sense or the army told him to turn around halfway, but why he needed his full motorcade to go to a disaster area with him in the first place is beyond me. Why he thought his motorcade should be given priority over emergency vehicles is also beyond me. His presence at the site ...

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Bhoja Air crash: We are accessories to murder

Please refrain from shedding tears or feeling remorse for the unfortunate victims of the Bhoja Air crash. As painful and heart wrenching as this episode is, I’m afraid we have no right to feel sorry or pity for the departed souls and their loved ones. This may seem harsh, but it is the truth; we are all culpable in what is brazen murder. We are the ones that are allowing these airlines to operate within our borders; we are the ones that are tolerating unethical business practices that all too frequently imply cost cutting at the expense of the public ...

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