Here are the highest paid govt departments

Published: July 17, 2016
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Huge disparity in staff salaries across departments leads to socio-economic imbalance. PHOTO: AFP

Huge disparity in staff salaries across departments leads to socio-economic imbalance. PHOTO: AFP

ISLAMABAD: A wide gulf in terms of salaries and perks and privileges for various government departments has sparked grave anxiety among those state employees who feel they are treated with sheer discrimination.

Statistics suggest a vast disparity between salaries and incentives for employees of the departments working under the federal government, which is termed astonishing. This could not only have adverse implications for the performance of certain government departments, but it may also trigger socio-economic problems.

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The federal government over the years has been increasing the salaries and perks and privileges of staff of certain departments, but at the same time, others continue to remain neglected with only a nominal pay raise.

The most privileged ones are working in the Supreme Court of Pakistan, President House, Prime Minister Secretariat, Benazir Income Support Programme, Federal Board of Revenue, National Accountability Bureau, National Highway Authority (NHA), Oil and Gas Regulatory Authority (Ogra), National Electric Power Regulatory Authority (Nepra), Trading Corporation of Pakistan (TCP) and others.

The salaries and allowances for staff of these departments are 50-300% higher than employees of other departments, particularly those that are working in the federal secretariat.

The least-paid employees are working in 42 federal ministries including the Finance Division that is responsible for preparing the budget for all federal departments.

Other low-paid departments and ministries include the Ministry of Federal Education and Professional Training, Planning Commission, Ministry of Interior, Ministry of Kashmir Affairs and Gilgit-Baltistan, Ministry of States and Frontier Regions, Ministry of Water and Power, Ministry of Commerce, Ministry of Petroleum and Natural Resources, Ministry of Food Security and Research, Ministry of Housing and Works, Cabinet Division, etc.

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The highest-paid employees belong to the Supreme Court, High Court, Law and Justice Commission of Pakistan, Federal Shariat Court and Federal Judicial Academy that are getting at least 300% higher pay than staff of the federal secretariat.

Likewise, staff of the President Secretariat and Prime Minister Secretariat is receiving 115% higher salaries than the federal secretariat employees.

The prime minister’s personal staff is also getting 115% higher pay whereas employees of the Federal Investigation Agency, NHA, National Motorway Police and Intelligence Bureau have 100% higher salaries.

The situation is no different for the regulatory bodies including Nepra, Ogra and Pakistan Electronic Media Regulatory Authority (Pemra) where employees are receiving 150% more pay.

Not only this, there is also disparity within different departments of the same ministry.

For instance, the TCP, which works under the Ministry of Commerce, gives 150% more pay than that for staff of the ministry itself.

Social challenges

Owing to the attractive packages for these state institutions, officers in other departments, including the efficient ones, make every effort to switch jobs and find a better place at all cost. This not only leads to ethical and social challenges, but also affects the performance of staff in the less-privileged departments.

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Officers of institutions like the Press Information Department are seeking to get deputed in other institutions or foreign missions to improve their lives.

These efforts bear fruit for those officers that have strong influence and connections, who manage to get deputed in attractive institutions. However, those who have no strong backing are left frustrated.

It seems a race is going on in Islamabad to join one of the attractive departments and for the purpose the officers adopt both ethical and unethical ways including giving bribe and avoiding merit.

Economists argue that there is no question of giving some employees such high salaries while ignoring the others. They believe a balance should be created between salaries and perks and privileges of the government employees of varying departments.

Otherwise, the gulf will widen and it will further fuel frustration among the low-paid employees, who will be forced to resort to unfair means to meet their needs.

The writer is a staff correspondent 

Published in The Express Tribune, July 18th, 2016.

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Reader Comments (18)

  • imran
    Jul 18, 2016 - 9:39AM

    So true. Why judges are getting such high salaries ?Recommend

  • faisal
    Jul 18, 2016 - 11:17AM

    the only change in judiciary is in judges remuneration after the famous ” ifthar ch. restoration movement”……………Recommend

  • Dilip Patel
    Jul 18, 2016 - 12:02PM

    It all starts with “we are all equal” and ends with “some are more equal than others”.Recommend

  • Raisani
    Jul 18, 2016 - 1:48PM

    @imran:
    Not only judges bro, but their office staff gets 300% more salaries in the name of judicial, special, utility and etc allowances.
    I’ve heard that many federal departments including PPL give raise on gross pay unlike basic pay in other departments. Recommend

  • Haji Atiya
    Jul 18, 2016 - 2:03PM

    @imran:
    Simple, so they can buy bulletproof cars !Recommend

  • Jameel ur Rasheed
    Jul 18, 2016 - 2:14PM

    High salaries of judges and Law Enforcers can be justified somehow!Recommend

  • Khabt-e-Azmat
    Jul 18, 2016 - 2:17PM

    Interesting isnt it, reporting and discussing salaries and perks of Judiciary and bureaucracy and the image displayed is of politicians.. Negative profiling ..how long will media keep on doing this??Recommend

  • asma tanoli
    Jul 18, 2016 - 4:33PM

    A number of other departments whose employees are in thousands and who also earn through other means such as motorway police and tax employees are not mentioned in your article. In some countries such as Bhutan, only two categories receive higher salaries. They are teachers and doctors. They are now the fastest growing economy in the world.Recommend

  • Mr.?
    Jul 18, 2016 - 4:34PM

    The disparity in pay exists in nearly all jobs, be it gov’t or private. I used to work for a bank which paid the corporate head a monthly salary which was approximately 40 times more than the other employees in the dept. The workload was insane. Office timings did not apply to the corporate head. Personal favours for the corporate head were apparently part of the job. Taking a sick day was equivalent to a crime being committed. After 2 years, I quit, when the last increment announced was approx Rs.400 (you read that right) and a deserved promotion refused stating the bank did not have a good year (same reasoning used the year before for the same increment given-even though profitable year was reported both times)
    There were others using influence and getting ridiculous packages, even though very well connected I did not pursue that route and wanted to make my own mark, hence I decided to resign. Unfortunately we live in a country where favours exceed merit. Recommend

  • shafi
    Jul 18, 2016 - 4:50PM

    the least paid fields r education and health departments, in Japan ,USA ,doctors and teachers r highest paid community.that y we as a nation r suffering becoz we neglect the most talented community of the society.Recommend

  • patriotic
    Jul 18, 2016 - 4:52PM

    What is the relationship between the news report and the picture given with it? If you are talking about government departments, there should be Pervez Khattak in the photo instead of Asfandyar. The kpk assembly has passed a bill recently, raising the salary of each MPA by 5 lakhs. That needs to be highlighted.Recommend

  • ishrat salim
    Jul 18, 2016 - 5:01PM

    @Haji Atiya:

    NO ! they do not buy bullet proof cars but take it from the govt pool like Ch Iftekahr Ex CJ.hey are stingy….they like to keep all the money to themselves.Recommend

  • kahn
    Jul 18, 2016 - 5:31PM

    Different categories of jobs require varying skills and competencies – therefore, disparities in salaries and benefits exists. Its everywhere in every government or non-government organization. This article may be of interest of many, but its a reality to accept!Recommend

  • Haji Atiya
    Jul 18, 2016 - 6:34PM

    @ishrat salim:
    Of course, but didn’t you get the sarcasm in my remark…Recommend

  • Black Diesel
    Jul 18, 2016 - 8:28PM

    Apart from every thing that has been said there is one thing that I like and that is the high pay of our judiciary…well judiciary should be paid highly as to avoid any circumstances in which judges can be bought…Recommend

  • Multan
    Jul 19, 2016 - 12:52AM

    Interestingly, Why State Bank of Pakistan and its employees are missing from the list?Recommend

  • Salman Ahmed
    Jul 19, 2016 - 1:01AM

    The picture shows the top most corrupt people in the country. Recommend

  • Just doing some math
    Jul 19, 2016 - 5:18PM

    Its absurd that the story makes it sound like the employees [highest officials mind you] of Supreme Court, High Court, Law and Justice Commission of Pakistan, Federal Shariat Court and Federal Judicial Academy are minting money. – maybe on the side they are. but comparing it to the federal secretariat is ridiculous. Fed. secretariat employees receive about Rs25,000 to Rs35,000 per month. lets even stretch it to 45k.
    300% higher pay than staff of the federal secretariat – lets say the pay is 30,000. 300% would be Rs90,000.
    now tell me something. how can a fed judge, at the age of 50 work with that pay considering the time he has put in since he became a lawyer at the age of 25. Rs90k is a joke.

    The story has used numerals to portray that the govt departments get paid heaps and heaps of money. lovely how our media leads a herd of cattle. Recommend

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