The two are nuclear-armed, arch rivals often threatening the stability of South Asia and with little common ground, but the sorry state of their national carriers puts India and Pakistan on the same pedestal.

India may be an emerging superpower and Pakistan seemingly always on the brink of a disaster, but the national carriers of the arch-rivals face similar woes.

Both carriers — Air India (AI) and Pakistan International Airlines (PIA) –- are struggling to stay afloat, battered by financial woes and mismanagement.

Amid a major cash crunch and reeling under heavy losses, Air India and Pakistan International Airlines are struggling to continue operations — a shame for the state-run carriers which often are the defining images of their countries.

“Financially unviable” is the term attached to both carriers by lenders and both airlines have so far just managed to survive on taxpayer money.