PESHAWAR: In a seemingly controversial move, the provincial government on Monday cancelled posting orders of a senior officer who had been posted as the new Excise and Taxation Department secretary just three days ago.
The Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa (K-P) Establishment Department issued a notification on Monday in which it withdrew the posting of senior official Abid Majeed, an officer of the Provincial Civil Services (PCS) in Basic Pay Scale (BPS) grade 20.
Majeed had been removed from the Health Department in September and the new provincial government had directed him to report to the establishment department pending a fresh assignment.
He was working as a secretary of the health department.
On September 27, when the K-P establishment department issued a notification announcing a major bureaucratic reshuffle in the province, he was posted as the secretary of excise and taxation department.
The notice to withdraw his posting, though, triggered debate in the bureaucracy.
With the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) government’s focus on health, Majeed had served as the bureaucratic chief of the all-important department for over two years since March 2016.
Apart from handling the health department, he was also given the additional charge of secretary for another important department, the elementary and secondary education department in March 2018.
Sources close to the development said that the withdrawal was expected since Majeed had apparently fallen out of favour of the PTI-led K-P government.
“It (the differences) started after the Chief Justice of Pakistan ordered to dissolve the board of governors of Medical Teaching Institutes (MTI) in a suo motu case relating to health facilities in K-P,” said a source close to the development.
While hearing the case in May 2018, Supreme Court Chief Justice Saqib Nisar had grilled and bashed Dr Nosherwan Barki—the man behind the idea of introducing MTIs and spearheading health reforms in the province. Dr Barki, who is apparently a cousin of Prime Minister Imran Khan, had been asked about his involvement in the affairs of K-P’s health department and had directed the health secretary to dissolve the BOGs of the MTIs.
Sources said that Dr Barki was apparently unhappy with Majeed and had apparently complained against him to Imran.
“The Insaf Doctors Forum also turned against Majeed and they served to force the whole thing,” said a source.
The sources further claimed that Prime Minister Imran had verbally told the K-P government that Majeed should not be given any posting in the province but the establishment department handed him a new assignment just a day before Imran visited Peshawar on Friday.
During his meeting with the provincial cabinet, Imran again ordered not to give Majeed any posting and made his anger known.
Majeed had yet to take charge of his new office when his posting orders were withdrawn.
Establishment Secretary Arshad Majeed did not respond when contacted about the reason behind order withdrawal. K-P government’s spokesperson Shaukat Yousufzai could also not be contacted despite repeated attempts.
Published in The Express Tribune, October 2nd, 2018.