LAHORE: The rising inflation has added to the woes of employees of the cash-strapped Pakistan Hockey Federation. They’ve gone unpaid for the last six months and one of their lower-grade employees, Mohamamd Sadiq, suffered from a heart attack. Sadiq is currently recovering in a hospital but making ends meet is becoming difficult day by day.

“We are coming to the office everyday with the hope that we will get some good news regarding our salaries,” one of the lower-grade employees told Dawn. “But we return disappointed everyday. Even the officers working in the PHF realise our miseries and most of them have stopped attending office to avoid seeing our needy faces.”

PHF president Tariq Bugti, recently given the reins of country’s hockey governing body by the Prime Minister, said he was trying to arrange for salaries of January to be disbursed.

“I am trying to arrange the funds to at least release the salaries to the employees for the last month, “ he told Dawn. “Another summary of Rs50.5million has been sent to the Prime Minister of Pakistan to clear all the dues of the players and the employees, but so far we haven’t received that special grant.”

Bugti added that his predecessor, retired Brig Khalid Sajjad Khokhar, had informed that the PHF has to pay Rs 80million to the players, their teams’ officials and the PHF employees. “The summary for the Rs50.5million grant in the pipeline,” he informed.

“As the bank accounts of the PHF are also being investigated by the FIA in the wake of the audit objections on the PHF’s accounts raised by the Auditor General of Pakistan offices, the operational process of the PHF’s bank accounts are disturbed,” added Bugti.

Published in Dawn, February 3rd, 2024

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