Kabul: Amid chaos at the airport, a PIA pilot showcases great skills and safely takes off a plane
With the Taliban on the brink of a complete takeover of Afghanistan, horrific scenes were witnessed at the Kabul airport. Hundreds of people rushed to catch a flight out of Afghanistan to escape the Taliban.
Things began to spiral out of control at the Hamid Karzai International Airport. Flights were suspended for much of Monday when at least five people were killed; it was unclear whether they had been shot or crushed in a stampede as people stormed the runway.
According to media reports, three people fell to their death from the underside of a US military aircraft after it took off, crashing on the roofs of homes near the airport. Amid the scenes of desperation and panic that unfolded, an unusual announcement was made by the control tower: pilots were told to take their own decisions.
How did the Pakistani Pilot deal with the crisis?
Therefore, a Pakistan International Airlines (PIA) pilot took a risky decision. The PIA pilot, Maqsood Bajarani, was also present at the airport on Monday. His mission was to bring back to Pakistan 170 people, including diplomats, safely.
He sat inside his Airbus jet, waiting for a green signal from the air traffic control to depart when a swarm of people thronged the runway in an attempt to catch a flight out of the war-torn country on board a US military aircraft. Another PIA flight, a Boeing 777, took off, but the Airbus had been held back.
Following the unexpected announcement and faced with a rapidly worsening situation, Bajarani kept his cool and took off without a moment’s delay, right behind fighter jets that took off just then. The crew took a sigh of relief when the captain informed them that they had entered the territory of Pakistan. The plane landed at Islamabad International Airport at about 7 10 PM on Sunday.
Bajarani receives appreciation from PIA
The PIA was all praise for how Bajarani successfully flew out of Kabul. Sources state that the senior officials of the PIA lauded the timely move by the pilot and his staff. The CEO of PIA said:
It was a significant achievement. The skills he demonstrated in a crisis are a sign of his professionalism. Captain Maqsood flew safely in unfavorable conditions. The pilot took off at a time when things were descending into chaos.
Captain Maqsood Bajarani proved that not all PIA pilots are to be criticized; some are worthy of appreciation.
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