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June 13, 2019

Sindh cabinet approves bill once again to revive Police Order 2002


June 13, 2019

The Sindh cabinet met on Wednesday and after a lengthy discussion approved once more the bill to revive Police Order 2002 and also allowed some amendments in it.

The meeting, chaired by Chief Minister Syed Murad Ali Shah, was held at the New Sindh Secretariat and attended by Chief Secretary Mumtaz Ali Shah, all provincial ministers, advisers and special assistants and secretaries concerned.

The agenda items of the meeting included The Sindh (Repeal of the Police Act, 1861 and revival of Police Order 2002) Bill, 2019; constitution of Sindh Minimum Wage Board; constitution of Governing Body of SESSI; conversion/utilisation of amenity plots for Mass Transit projects undertaken by the Sindh government; an amendment in The Establishment of the Office of Ombudsman for the province of Sindh Act 1991; appointment of administrator in Town Committee, Shadi Palli, District Umerkot; and constitution of provincial advisory council for Empowerment of Persons with Disabilities.

The additional items taken up with the permission of the CM included rationalisation in monthly OZT (Octroi Zilla Tax) share of 1,526 union councils and union committees, capital shortfall in Sindh Bank, appointment of CEO/president of Sindh Bank Ltd, an amendment in the Sindh Regularization of Teachers appointed on a contract basis Act, 2018 and a resource mobilisation plan, 2019-20.

Police Order 2002: The CM told the cabinet that Sindh Governor Imran Ismail had called upon the provincial assembly to reconsider the bill (to revive Police Order 2002) to achieve its objective of having an independent force for the province.

The cabinet extensively discussed the observation recorded by the Sindh Governor and made some minor amendments in the bill. Adviser to Chief Minister on Law Murtaza Wahab briefed the cabinet about the discussion on the cabinet’s sub-committee (on the new police law) had held with the police, the civil society and the concerned petitioner in the court and their lawyer.

The new law had been re-framed and re-phrased in consultation with the stakeholders, he said, adding that the home minister’s proposed powers of transferring investigation was been withdrawn from the law.

The cabinet was told that the tenure of the inspector general of police had been strengthened properly, and that the IGP would transfer/post district police Officers and DIGs in consultation with the CM. The cabinet approved the bill referred back by the governor and also accorded approval to presenting it to the provincial assembly on Thursday.

Advisory Council

The Sindh cabinet approved a 62-member provincial advisory council for the empowerment of persons with disabilities.

It would a Sindh-level consultative and advisory body for issues related to persons with disabilities and would facilitate the continuous evaluation of a comprehensive policy for the empowerment of such persons for full enjoyment of their rights.

Its chairman would be the minister of the department of empowerment of persons with disabilities while the vice chairman would be secretary of the department. Four MPAs have also been inducted into the advisory council.

Sindh Bank

The cabinet was apprised that the Sindh Bank Ltd was facing a shortfall in capital to the tune of Rs14.7 billion due to a combination of various factors, including an increase in non-performing loans, deficit in valuation of the investment portfolio and also due to an increase in the capital requirements by the State Bank of Pakistan (SBP).

The SBP has also conveyed the matter to the finance department. Cabinet members said that the bank was performing well but due to some issues it was faced with capital shortfall; therefore, it must be supported.

The Sindh Bank requested the cabinet that the government may subscribe finance from Term Finance Certificate (TFC) of Rs3.7 billion. The cabinet approved the request. The cabinet also approved the merger of Sindh Leasing Company Ltd with a capital of Rs3.5 billion. The board of the leasing company has already approved the merger.

The cabinet decided to impose a ban on further lending by Sindh Bank. The bank has also been directed to present its detailed financial plan in the cabinet in September 2019. The cabinet also decided to appoint president/CEO of Sindh Bank and the recommended names would be sent to the State Bank of Pakistan for further approval.

Change in teachers’ law

The cabinet discussed an amendment in the Sindh Regularization of Teachers Appointed on contract basis Bill. It was told that the act in its original form provided for the regularization of the teachers appointed in the year 2014, and an amendment in the act was needed to make room for the regularization of the services of those Sindh University and NTS (National Testing Service)-qualified contractual teachers who were appointed in the years 2015, 2016 and 2017. The cabinet approved the amendment.

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