Tit-for-tat: Jhelum DC, Cantonment Board CEO lock horns

August 02, 2021

ISLAMABAD: The deputy commissioner and the chief executive officer of the Cantonment Board of Jhelum have locked horns over the former’s letter threatening disciplinary action against the...

Share Next Story >>>

ISLAMABAD: The deputy commissioner and the chief executive officer (CEO) of the Cantonment Board of Jhelum have locked horns over the former’s letter threatening disciplinary action against the latter.

Officials close to CEO Ghulam Muhammad Abro and Deputy Commissioner (DC) Rao Pervez Akhtar-- who did not want to be named-- confirmed to The News the veracity of the threatening letter and the response to it. The News has copies of the two documents.

The row was triggered by the non-participation of the CEO in a meeting called by the DC in connection with a plantation drive.

In his letter dated July 17 with the subject of ‘Explanation’, Pervez Akhtar wrote that a meeting of the monsoon tree plantation campaign 2021 was convened on July 17 under his chairmanship and Abro was also invited to attend it.

But, the letter said, that the CEO was absent from the meeting without information to or the prior approval of the DC. “This is highly objectionable and shows negligence/ inefficiency to the official duty on your part.”

The letter “directed” the CEO to “explain” his position within three days failing which it would be presumed that he had nothing to offer in his defence and the competent authority would be requested to take disciplinary action under the Punjab Employees Efficiency Discipline & Accountability Act (PEEDA) 2006 against Abro on account of his poor performance and negligence.

The CEO said in his response addressed to the DC that Pervez Akhtar’s communication is “returned with surprise about his knowledge of service matters/ rules”. He said he was a federal government civil servant of Pakistan and calling his explanation under PEEDA was beyond Akhtar’s jurisdiction and wishful desire. “You are not the authority to monitor the performance and dutifulness of me as pointed out in your letter.”

Abro further wrote that as a matter of fact, it is expected from the DC to show grace and professional acumen in writing to a fellow officer who does not come under his command and authority and who is rather reporting to the federal government.

The letter also said the DC dispatched the letter in the routine ‘daak’, which was read by the entire staff of the CEO’s office. “You should know that the explanation/ disciplinary communication shall be communicated under personal/ confidential label; this is known as official etiquette.”

Personally, Abro said, he has high regard for the head of the district administration (DC), which is “a seat having rich legacy, class and history”, but Pervez Akhtar’s act is a “disappointment of this fond perception. It is further prayed that may Allah bless district Jhelum.”

The CEO asked the DC to cancel his “unauthorized” letter within 24 hours of receipt of his reply failing which the matter would be referred to the higher authorities, the Punjab chief secretary, and Rawalpindi commissioner.

An official said that the angry exchange of letters has also involved the Establishment Division, which is now taking steps to resolve the matter. Efforts are also afoot to sort out the matter at other levels, he said.



More From National