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Friday June 21, 2024

Ministry reverses restoration of BS-20 officers dismissed for corruption

By Waseem Abbasi
December 04, 2018

ISLAMABAD: The Ministry of Science has reversed the restoration of two officers of Grade 20 who were dismissed for corruption and record tempering in 2016, after the issue was highlighted by The News on Monday.

Surprisingly, a new order issued by the Ministry on Monday says the original restoration orders were issued without the approval of the competent authority, which is the Secretary of the Ministry of Science. The News had reported on Monday that BS-20 officers Haider Zaman Khattak and Dr Hafeez Ullah Khan who were dismissed for corruption and record tempering in 2016 were quietly restored by the Ministry of Science last week in a glaring violation of the orders of the Islamabad High Court.

On Sunday, the Chairman Pakistan Science Foundation (PSF) Qaiser Majeed told The News that the restoration orders were issued after Minister for Science Azam Swati approved the appeal of the dismissed officer. But it turned out the Secretary Ministry of Science Yasmin Masood, who is the competent authority, was kept unaware of the whole issue. “With the approval of the competent authority this Ministry’s Office orders dated Islamabad November 19, 2018 are hereby withdrawn ab-inito as the said orders were not issued with the approval of competent authority,” says the fresh letter issued on Monday by the Ministry of Science.

But it was claimed on earlier orders issued on 19th November, copies of which are available with The News, that the same were issued with the approval of the competent authority. This means someone drafted the letters without the approval of the secretary. However when contacted by The News, Chairman PSF Qaiser Majeed claimed that the Secretary had earlier approved the notes for restoration of the accused officer but now she says the approval was only granted for a new inquiry.

“But legally speaking the departmental inquiry cannot be held unless the officer is reinstated,” the Chairman said. When asked will heads roll for the criminal offence or fraud if the orders were issued without the approval of Secretary, the Chairman played down the offence saying that everything was approved.

The Chairman said the accused officer applied for restoration through an application to the Minister for Science Azam Swati who had approved their application and directed the PSF to initiate the process of restoration. The sources said the Secretary Yasmin Masood on Monday called the officers of PSF and expressed her anger over issuance of orders without her approval.