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ISLAMABAD, Oct 24: A high court bench directed on Wednesday the Pakistan Telecommunication Company (PTCL) high-ups and the information technology and finance secretaries to reply within a fortnight as to why officers of the company are not granted benefits of the revised pay scales announced by the government.

The case about denial of revised/corporate pay scales had been filed by the PTCL officers’ association in which the federation of Pakistan through the information technology and finance secretaries and PTCL president and board of directors was made the respondent.

Lahore High Court (LHC) Rawalpindi Bench Judge Justice Shabbar Raza Rizvi on Wednesday issued notices to all the respondents with directives that replies be submitted within 15 days.

The petitioners have pleaded that the government announced revision of pay scales for the employees of the officer cadre in 2001, but the same had so far not been granted to the PTCL officers in grade-17 and above.

They brought to the notice of the learned judge that these revised government pay scales had been applied to other autonomous bodies and corporations.

“The officers of the PTCL are performing their duties to the best of their abilities and there has been no lapse whatsoever but despite that they are being discriminated against,” they said in their petition.

Unlike this, the newly-appointed employees are imparted training on much higher packages whereas the same is being denied to the old ones, they pleaded.

They termed it discriminatory and violative of article 25 of the constitution. “This has created a totally uncertain situation amongst the PTCL officers and they have been feeling insecure and unsafe,” they said.

Another plea taken by the PTCL officers is regarding the Voluntary Separation Scheme (VSS) for the employees. The PTCL officers’ association had argued that if this scheme was implemented before adoption of revised government pay scales or introduction of corporate pay scales for the officer cadre, then it would cause irreparable loss to the in-service employees and those who were about to retire.