Employees of Pakistan's national airline took a black goat to the tarmac last month, near an ATR-42 aircraft that was ready to depart on a domestic flight from ISB, and sacrificed the animal.
PK had grounded its fleet of ATR turboprop passenger planes after a 7DEC crash killed all 47 people on board. The flight was the first by an ATR since then and airline employees reportedly killed the animal as an offering to ensure future safety.
Airline spokesperson Danyal Gillani issued what was very likely the first airline statement about goat sacrifice inthe history of aviation:
"It was done by some local employees as a gesture of gratitude over the clearance of the first ATR [for flying]."
The fact that it was a black goat was significant. Some Pakistanis believe that sacrificing a black goat is a particularly effective way to counteract black magic and the evil eye.
In defense of the sacrifice, a Twitter user who goes by MisBis wrote: "There's nothing wrong in giving Sadqua [a charitable offering] ... Sadqa bari balao se bachata hai [it hedges against many troubles] ... stop making it a joke."
But the Pakistan International Airlines Pilots Association was not happy. "When you slaughter an animal in the middle of a major airport next to an aircraft, it is bound to attract attention," said a representative.