Saturday March 02, 2024

Punjab flexes muscles to bar Centre from appointments in province

September 18, 2022

ISLAMABAD: The Punjab bureaucracy has prepared and widely circulated a draft bill to prevent the federal government from appointing chief secretary and inspector general of police besides blocking civil services of Pakistan including PAS, PSP and others from serving in the province.

If legislated, such a move would seriously hurt the unity of the Federation. Experts, however, believe that no province can unilaterally discredit inter-provincial agreements by superimposing its laws enacted disregarding the limitations of Article 240.

A key leader of Punjab’s Provincial Management Service (PMS) association when approached, confirmed to The News that they have prepared the draft bill with the intention of getting it tabled in the provincial assembly as a private member bill. He said that what is proposed in the draft bill is constitutional and does not threaten the Federation and its unity. According to a source, the draft bill was also shared with a key bureaucratic aide of Punjab Chief Minister Pervaiz Elahi.

The draft bill suggested following amendments in the Punjab Civil Servant Act 1974: “4A: (1). All the appointments on all posts from grade-1 to grade-22 (including posts of Chief Secretary, Chairman P&D, All posts of ACS, Senior Member/ Member, administrative secretaries, heads of attached departments/ bodies, all divisional and other commissioners, deputy commissioners, assistant commissioners, etc) borne on the provincial budget shall be made by the provincial government.

(2). All such posts mentioned in sub-section 4A(1) shall be occupied by the officials/ officers from the provincial service cadres either by initial appointment or by promotion or by transfer. However, an official/ officer from any other government (Federal and other Provincial/ Regional governments in Pakistan) may be appointed to a provincial post on deputation by provincial government if a requisition is made from any department of the Government of the Punjab.

(3). The service rules made by any other government/ authority (Federal, provincial or regional) shall not apply to the provincial posts from Grade-1 to Grade-22 borne on the Punjab Provincial Budget.

(4). All the service rules for the respective provincial post from Grade-1 to Grade-22 borne on the Punjab provincial budget shall not carry names of any alien service cadre other than names of provincial service cadres.”

The draft also suggested amendment in Section-8, after sub-section (1), a new sub-section-(1a) shall be added as follows:

“(1a). The provincial posts from Grade-1 to Grade-22 borne on the Punjab Provincial budget shall not be subjected to any quota/service cadre rules of federal or other provincial/ regional governments (Including Civil Service of Pakistan Rules or under any other federal SRO/ Rules).

I. All the provincial posts from Grade-17 to Grade-22 borne on the Punjab Provincial Budget reserved for quota of any alien service cadre (Federal or other Provincial/ regional service cadres) shall be reserved for the promotion of officials/ officers of the provincial service cadres in Punjab.

II. All the Punjab Government Departments and respective attached formations shall amend the service rules/ promotion rules for each of the provincial post from Grade-1 to Grade-22 following provisions of this section-4A with immediate effect. III. Each department/ formation shall hold at least three promotion meetings for respective promotion posts in a financial year.”