LAHORE: The federal government finally notified on Tuesday Abdullah Khan Sumbal as Punjab Chief Secretary for three months, ending the embarrassing cycle of extensions being given to the officer to hold a “look-after” charge of the highest administrative office in the province.

Mr Sumbal had been given four extensions since Sept 17, when he was told to “look after” the office of the Punjab chief secretary after his predecessor, Kamran Ali Afzal, filed a “protest leave”, resenting “postings and transfers of senior civil servants without merit,” which he tried to resist.

On the other hand, the federal government also granted 130-day ex-Pakistan leave to Mr Afzal, who wanted to travel to Australia.

Earlier, Mr Afzal had applied for leave twice and then even stopped applying for it, without joining his office.

The federal government notification with regards to both decisions temporarily ended the awkward situation that the tussle between the federal and provincial governments had created over the issue.

Published in Dawn, December 7th, 2022

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