Tuesday December 05, 2023

Is education department misusing authority in grade-19 promotions?

July 04, 2023

The decision of the Sindh chief secretary to give authority to the education department of the provincial government to promote and transfer grade-19 employees has backfired.

The influential and blue-eyed employees are benefiting from this move because their files are expedited through the appropriate channels for the approvals they seek or the relevant officials personally contact them, and they receive VIP treatment.

Cases of others are being ignored, leaving them to aimlessly pursue action on their deserving files by going from one bureaucrat to another. Some powerful people working in the education department are delaying sending transfer and posting requests to the education minister.

An education department employee who is expecting a promotion to BS-19 told this writer on the condition of anonymity that the education secretary had moved a summary of his promotion to the education minister weeks ago, but his promotion is yet to be granted. The summary also covered the promotions of other workers.

Last month, with the agreement of Sindh’s chief minister, CS Dr Mohammad Sohail Rajput amended Rule 21 of the Civil Servants Rules, 1974, to transfer the powers of promotion to BS-19 to the health and education ministers.

The CS’s office has been unable to process the promotion files for the health and education departments’ BS-19 employees, according to a notice issued in this respect.

Delays in promotions or postings might stall administrative processes. Therefore, in BS-19 the ministers of both departments were given the authority to make promotions.

No junior officer or OPS is to be assigned to the senior grade posts, and no deputation is to be made outside the department were established as rules of conduct in the aforementioned notification, making it essential for the health and education departments to conform to the judgments of the apex court.

It has come to light that Halim Soomro, the personal secretary of the education minister, has been working in the population welfare department despite being officially employed by the education department, in direct defiance of the CS’s directions and the code of conduct.

Atif Vego, a spokesman for the education minister, answered this correspondent’s inquiry regarding the status of transfer and posting cases involving BS-19 personnel by saying that Education Minister Syed Sardar Shah is out of town.