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Pak bans Bhoja airline chief from leaving country after deadly crash

Islamabad, Sat, 21 Apr 2012 ANI

Islamabad, April 21(ANI): Pakistan has placed an airline head on the Exit Control List (ECL) in the wake of a probe into the Bhoja aircrash.

Pakistan Interior Minister Rehman Malik said that Farooq Bhoja had been put on the "exit control list," which implies that he had been barred from leaving the country.

"It is being said that the aircraft was pretty old, so it has been ordered to investigate thoroughly the air worthiness of the Bhoja Air aircraft. The causes will be investigated, whether it was any fault in the aircraft, it was lightning, the bad weather or any other factor that caused loss of precious lives," The Dawn quoted Malik, as saying.

His statement came after 127 people were killed in the Bhoja Air passenger jet crash, which is believed to the second major airline crash in Pakistan's history.

The last major plane crash in the country occurred in July 2010 when an Airbus A321 aircraft operated by domestic carrier Airblue crashed into the hills overlooking Islamabad, killing all 152 people aboard.

Bhoja Air started domestic operations in Pakistan in 1993 and eventually expanded to international flights to the United Arab Emirates in 1998. The company suspended operations in 2001 due to financial difficulties but resumed them in 2012.

A former crash investigator, Nasim Ahmed ruled out age and air worthiness of the plane as causes of the accident and blamed a combination of factors for the tragedy, including the weather or some form of unexpected incident that caused the pilot to lose vital awareness of the plane's location. (ANI)

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