KARACHI: Sindh Chief Minister Syed Murad Ali Shah presiding over a cabinet meeting here at CM House on Tuesday directed all the divisional commissioners to scrutinise all the domiciles/permanent residence certificates (PRCs) issued in all the districts during the last three years and report to him within 60 days.
He also directed the chief secretary to fix the responsibility on the officers/officials involved in issuing fake domiciles/PRC certificates so that exemplary punishments could be awarded to them.
The meeting was attended by all the ministers, advisers, special assistants, Chief Secretary Mumtaz Shah, Advocate General Sindh Salman Talibuddin and other officers concerned.
The cabinet raised the issue of misuse of Sindh domicile/PRC certificates by non-residents of the province for obtaining admission to educational institutes and getting government jobs, both federal and provincial, against the quota reserved for residents of the province.
Sindh cabinet approves draft bill to establish, manage and regulate model cemeteries
The chief minister had constituted a committee in May 2020 to probe the matter of misuse of domicile/PRC certificates. The committee inquired about the process of issuance of domicile/PRC in four districts — Larkana, Kandhkot-Kashmore, Ghotki and Jamshoro — and submitted a report.
According to the report 423 cases were examined, of which 154 were declared suspicious on various grounds.
ACS-Home Qazi Shahid Pervez briefing the cabinet said that the deputy commissioners had delegated the responsibility of issuing domicile/PRC certificates to ADCs/ACs and no field inquiry was being conducted.
A private company was tasked to do the important work of domicile/PRC without adequate checks and balances.
The chief minister said that the domicile certificate was wrongly used as a proof of permanent residence at a particular place. He added that under the Pakistan Citizenship Act, 1951 domicile was the certificate of citizenship of Pakistan and did not limit it to any particular place.
Mr Shah, with the approval of the cabinet, constituted a committee to review the rules of domicile and PRC and suggest amendments. The committee comprises Minister for Revenue Makhdoom Mahboob, Minister for Irrigation Jam Khan Shoro, Adviser Murtaza Wahab and the Senior Member Board of Revenue.
The chief minister directed all the divisional commissioners to conduct a detailed scrutiny of the domiciles/PRCs issued in their districts during the last three years and submit a report.
Meanwhile, the chief minister directed the IT department to develop a database of the domiciles/PRCs.
School clustering policy
The school education department presented a ‘School clustering policy’ under which a group of geographically neighbouring interconnected schools working in a certain area and characterised by common activities would be clustered.
Minister of Education Sardar Shah said that in Sindh schools were widespread in different categories such as primary, middle, elementary, high and higher secondary schools. Most of the primary schools in rural areas were vulnerable, isolated two-room with one teacher schools. He added that there was a need for a mechanism to strengthen these isolated schools through clustering. Each cluster will have one main school called the ‘hub school’.
The cabinet approved the proposal and the chief minister directed the education department to work out a detailed survey of the out of school children and take measures to bring them back to school.
The cabinet also approved the upgrade policy of schools from primary to elementary. Under the policy, the school located in rural areas with an enrolment of 20 boys in class V and ‘catchment area’ schools with an enrolment of 30 boys in class V and having no post-primary school within three kilometres would qualify to be upgraded.
The girls’ primary school with an enrolment of 15 girls in class V should be upgraded if it has catchment area schools of more students and has no other post-primary girls’ school within a radius of two kilometres.
In urban areas, the upgrade of a primary boys’ school to an elementary school would have the criteria of enrolment of 20 boys in class V, and 30 boys in the catchment area schools with no post-primary school in the vicinity. The criteria for upgrading of girls’ primary schools has been fixed at 15 girls in class V and 30 in the catchment area schools.
The Sindh cabinet approved the establishment of Sindh Manzil-i-Sukoon Authority with the objective to establish, manage and regulate model cemeteries or graveyards and crematoriums. It would also provide to the public cemetery services, funeral, crematory, transfer services and other related services.
There are 203 graveyards in Karachi, of them 184 are for Muslims and 19 for non-Muslims. Murtaza Wahab said that 90 graveyards were under the control of local government, 106 under societies such as the DHA, PQA, CAA and Steel Mills. He added that seven were under the control of cantonment boards and six graveyards had been banned for burial due to lack of space.
The cabinet approved the draft Sindh Manzil-i-Sukoon Authority Bill-2021 and referred it to the assembly.
The cabinet on the request of the health department extended the contract with HANDS and MERF under public private partnership for another six months.
Published in Dawn, September 8th, 2021