Readers’ Op-ed #1: “National” flag carrier, or “provincial?”
Many times, our readers send us opinions and news to be posted on the Karachi Metblog. The Readers’ Op-Ed Series is started to bring selected pieces from the readers to the public. This is not the BBC, so the choice, editing and placement of content is totally whimsical. The bloggers and the management of Karachi Metblog may not neccessarily agree with the content.
Here’s one by Heart of Aries.
“NATIONAL” FLAG CARRIER OR “PROVINCIAL?”
Well folks…PIA has done it again with its tail colors though with a blunder this time. PIA has had a long and shaky history of doing and redoing livery in general and tail colors in particular.
In late 90s the much awaited change of tail livery came up after almost 8 years as the late Sadequain’s Islamic Art was adopted for the tail of PIA fleet without changing the colors on the aircraft fuselage (body). Immediately after the repaint, the new Managing Director decided that it looked like ‘insects crawling on the tail’ and ordered undoing the entire fleet. Though the general opinion was that it looked great. Then in 2004 the much awaited corporate makeover came with the traditional green tail and PIA lettering giving way to the new creamish tail with the fluttering Pakistani flag. This livery drew mixed reaction from the local and international public and aviation concerns with some saying that it was a fresh-look whilst others complained of ‘lack of color’.
Recently PIA decided to redo the aircraft fleet with different tails again in less than 18 months from the last makeover. However this time they’ve gone a step in the wrong direction by selecting four different tail colors for the entire fleet. Each color representing one province of Pakistan. Not only that the flag (after the already disappeared PIA lettering from the tail) has given way to the Urdu lettering of PIA on the top of the tail and the flag goes down to the aft door of the aircraft, but the aircraft carries the ‘provincial’ name in large letters on the aft body.
In mid 90s British Airways did something similar by painting their aircraft in various ‘wordwide’ themes which drew a furious and hostile reaction from the British public who insisted that the airline no longer represented Britain as a country. The same applies here that PIA’s new tail does not represent Pakistan but one of its provinces. This is such a disappointment. I hope PIA is able to undo this change and try to bring all four provincial themes on the same tail. That would be better. Plus the flag and PIA lettering should be prominent.
The picture shows the first aircraft recently painted in Karachi in ‘Colours of the Desert’ – Thar livery depicting Sindh.
Other than that…the tail looks strikingly beautiful.
-Heart of Aries