Senate panel to take up violation of provincial job quotas

Updated September 09, 2019

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The issue had been raised by Mohammad Akram of the National Party in the Senate in September last year. — PPI/File
The issue had been raised by Mohammad Akram of the National Party in the Senate in September last year. — PPI/File

ISLAMABAD: The Senate Standing Committee on Cabinet Secretariat will again take up on Wednesday (Sept 11) the issue of purported non-observance of provincial job quotas in the federal government services.

The three-point meeting agenda shows that the committee headed by Talha Mehmood of the JUI-F will specifically consider the issue of the 17,270 posts for Baloch­istan reportedly lying vacant in various government departments, be­­sides discussing the same grievances of Sindh.

The issue had been raised by Mohammad Akram of the National Party in the Senate in September last year through a calling attention notice and Chairman Sadiq Sanjrani had referred it to the standing committee after Minister of State for Parlia­men­­tary Affairs Ali Moham­mad Khan refuted the claims and stated that only 4,095 posts were actually vacant.

The committee has been discussing the matter for many months, but it has failed to reach any conclusion. The Senate has also been witnessing protests and walkouts by the members belonging to smaller provinces, particularly those from Balochistan.

Before Mr Akram, the same issue had also been raised by Dr Sikandar Mandhro of the PPP when speaking on a point of public importance, he had quoted the Statistics Bul­let­in of the Establishment Division, which stated that out of 1,137,843 sanctioned posts in the federal services 966,606 had been filled.

Dr Mandhro had alleged that Punjab and KP had 6,496 and 87,296 more jobs, respectively, than their allocated constitutional share. But, he alleged, Baloch­­istan and Sindh were facing a shortfall of 17,270 and 17,473 posts, respectively.

While moving his calling attention notice, Mr Akram had regretted that Baloch­istan had been ignored both by military and democratic governments. He said accord­­ing to a report, some 40,000 people of Baloch­istan were employed in the federal government departments, adding that he had doubts about this figure as most of these posts had been occupied by the people having fake domicile of the province. He also alleged that the people of Baloch­istan were not being accommodated in foreign service.

Responding to the notice, Parliamentary Affairs Minis­­ter Ali Mohammad Khan had explained that the quota for Balochistan had been increased from 3pc to 6pc during Mush­arraf’s military regime in Feb 2007. He said that 4.36pc of the 6pc allotted quota had already been filled. He said 13,118 posts had been identified as vacant, out of which 9,023 had already been filled and 4,095 posts were still lying vacant.

Published in Dawn, September 9th, 2019