Almost every civil airport in Pakistan, is today on Red List of Unsafe Airfields, because large birds like eagles and vultures pose a threat to commercial aviation flights. Having compromised passenger safety at existing airports, where even today such irregular construction continues in Lahore, it was hoped that New Islamabad airport built at a cost exceeding Rs 100 Billion located over 30 miles from outskirts of Islamabad would be free from such potent violations.

Almost daily, new housing societies are being advertised for sale in vicinity of New Islamabad Airport. It seems Profits and commercial interests of real estate developers matter more than lives of airline passengers. Why should CAA and local administration remain muted until such time these constructions are finalized and then Third Party Interest be cited to seek regularization. Can Pakistan, already under microscopic scan of hostile countries, afford that circumstances are allowed to exist for major aviation crashes or accidents to occur. Are Profits Of Few more important than lives of thousands taxpaying innocent who pay to travel?

It is taxes from airline passengers and aviation companies which fund Civil Aviation Authority and its executives and workforce to ensure that ICAO Safety rules are enforced. ICAO mandates and CAA rules do incorporate Rule of Mandatory Sterile Zone of 15 KM around periphery of active runways.

It is unfortunate that vested interests of corrupt executives within CAA in collaboration with district or cantonment administration have been giving NOC allowing construction of Housing Societies, Clubs, Marriage Halls, Butcheries, Restaurants and Hotels. The waste from them attract birds large enough to cause severe damage to aircraft in approach or take-off configuration, which can lead to fatal crashes and accidents involving hundreds of innocent passengers.

MALIK TARIQ ALI,

Lahore.