Pakistan Bars Airline Chief From Leaving Country

Investigation under way in crash that killed 127
By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted Apr 21, 2012 7:41 AM CDT
Women mourn while waiting for the coffin of a victim of the Bhoja Air Boeing 737 accident, outside a hospital in Islamabad.   (Getty Images)
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(Newser) – The 127 people killed aboard a Pakistani jet that crashed yesterday may have been victims of deadly combination of factors: terrible weather, an old plane, and generally weak oversight of the nation's aviation industry. As the investigation gets under way, the government has barred the chief of Bhoja Air from leaving the country, reports the BBC. That's generally done if someone might face criminal charges, notes AP.

A quote from the interior minister doesn't bode well for him: "If the airline management doesn't have enough money it doesn't mean you go and buy a 30-year-old or more aircraft as if it were a rickshaw and start an airline." As the AP notes, however, that could be the government trying to distance itself from criticism for granting a license to Bhoja Air, which resumed operations only last month after grounding its fleet in 2001 because of money trouble. The Boeing 737 came down in a thunderstorm as it was preparing to land at Islamabad's main airport.

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