THIS is with reference to the article ‘Extra baggage’ (May 7) which I read with a sense of déjà vu. Among a number of interesting and shocking facts presented, the most surprising was that 72.5 per cent of the entire government of Pakistan workforce consists of three categories of employees: qasids/naib qasids, clerks of various denominations, and guards/chowkidars.

Everyone is fully aware that federal and provincial governments, as well as all the regulatory authorities, are overstaffed for decades and keep getting more and more bloated every year. The ‘new’ fact mentioned above indicates not only a culture of a domestic staff support system in all government offices, but also that the elite accommodate them for their own comfort.

The underprivileged are grateful and will do anything for the elite to retain the meagre income. In return, they use their access to the elite to augment their income in various ways.

The International Monetary Fund (IMF) should take up such matters with the government in Islamabad, and set a target date for a reset, benchmarking the best practices among regional countries.

Moin Mohajir
Karachi

Published in Dawn, May 21st, 2024

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