ISLAMABAD: After Islamabad High Court (IHC) restored Pakistan Medical and Dental Council (PMDC) on Tuesday, the employees of the commission reached outside their offices on Thursday morning but were not allowed entry into the premises.The employees wanted to enter the building forcefully but PMDC Registrar retired Brigadier Hafizuddin Siddiqui stopped them from doing so. He later approached the ministry for implementation of the court orders. However, he was told that the employees should wait as the government was planning to file an appeal against the decision of the IHC that abolished Pakistan Medical Commission (PMC) leading to the restoration of the PMDC and its sacked employees.

Later, the employees contacted the district administration for implementation of the court order. Assistant Commissioner Ali Javed reached the PMDC and contacted the Ministry of National Health Services (NHS). However, a letter was sent to him by the ministry stating that the building of the PMC [which does not exist anymore] had been sealed.On October 19, 2019, President Dr Arif Alvi promulgated an ordinance which left the PMDC dissolved and paved the way for establishment of the PMC.

On October 20, the ministry of NHS sealed the building of the PMDC and informed its 220 employees that their services had been terminated.

However, on Feb 11, IHC declared the presidential ordinance ‘null and void’ and restored PMDC along with the services of the sacked employees.

Talking to Dawn, the PMDC registrar said he went to the office of Secretary National Health Services (NHS) Dr Allah Bakhsh Malik and showed him the written orders of the IHC.

“However, the secretary suggested to me to wait as the government was planning to file an appeal against the decision of the IHC. I had no option and returned. The employees are suffering as they are not getting salaries and unable to pay house rents. Even medical treatment of aged parents has been stopped. Despite this, I asked them to remain peaceful,” he said.

Replying a question, he said it had been decided that an application for contempt of court would be filed in the IHC. The letter sent to the assistant commissioner (available with Dawn) by the ministry of NHS stated: “The competent authority has directed to seal the premises of PMC. The District Administration Islamabad is, therefore, requested to intervene in the matter and officially seal the building of PMC till further orders.”

Mr Siddiqui said the letter was itself a blunder as PMC does not exist after the court order.

“A writ petition is being prepared and hopefully it would be filed on Friday (today),” he said.

Published in Dawn, February 14th, 2020