ISLAMABAD: The Islamabad High Court (IHC) on Friday issued notices to the Attorney General Khalid Jawed Khan as well as other respondents in a petition filed by paramedical staff, nurses and doctors of Pakistan Institute of Medical Sciences (Pims) against Presidential Ordinance on Medical Teaching Institute (MTI).
Dozens of paramedics, nurses and doctors of Pims are currently on protest against the promulgation of the ordinance which they claim would deprive them of their perks and privileges of being civil servant.
IHC Justice Mohsin Akhtar Kayani also issued notices to Secretary Ministry of National Health, Establishment Division and Chairman Medical Teaching Institute (MTI).
Court issues notices to attorney general, health secretary, Establishment Division and MTI chairman
The petitioners’ counsel Mudassar Khalid Abbasi argued before the court that Pims was established in 1986 and it was being governed by the federal government until 2013.
The then government in 2013 established Shaheed Zulfikar Ali Bhutto University in 2013 and the hospital was given under the command of vice chancellor through an Act of Parliament.
He said the government had issued ordinance to pave the way for privatisation of Pims which would change the structure of the hospital.
The counsel said that the medical staff was on frontline in the war against Covid-19 and such legislation would demoralise them. The ordinance would affect the rights of Pims staff, he said.
The court inquired that whether the status of the civil servants of Pims under the act would change?
The petitioner’s counsel said that the Pims inducts grade 16 and above staff through Federal Public Service Commission (FPSC) whereas the lower cadre is inducted through departmental committee.
He said the ordinance would change the service structure of the staff as well as they would no more be civil servant after the structural changes in the hospital’s administration.
The bench asked the lawyer to peruse MTI Ordinance and explain as to whether it meant that the same institution would be now operated under two laws.
The court noted that under this ordinance all the status of the civil servants there had been changed.
The bench further remarked that the employees of Pims could not go anywhere else. Further hearing in this matter has been adjourned till Jan 28.
Published in Dawn, January 16th, 2021