RAWALPINDI/ ISLAMABAD: In a move aimed at bridging gaps at government-run educational institutions in the federal capital, the federal education ministry on Thursday decided to issue posting orders of teaching and non-teaching staff at institutions being run under the Federal Directorate of Education (FDE).
This was decided in a high-level meeting on Thursday which was chaired by Federal Education Minister Shafqat Mahmood himself. Prime Minister’s Special Adviser on Capital Development Authority (CDA) Affairs Ali Nawaz Awan and other senior officials of the education ministry and the FDE participated in the meeting.
During the meeting, the participants were briefed about the situation after the government’s appeal against the Islamabad High Court’s verdict was rejected.
It was decided that they will solicit the opinion of the Law Ministry for fulfilling all codal formalities before issuing the posting orders of employees as per court orders.
As per court orders, all employees up to basic pay scale (BPS) grade-15, will be regularised. The meeting decided that the move will be implemented once the federal cabinet grants its approval.
Further, cases of all such employees who were serving in BPS-16 or BPS-17 but were not being regularised will be sent to the Federal Public Service Commission (FPSC) to reach a decision on their fate.
Mehmood categorically said that these decisions were final and there will be no further meeting on this matter again.
Later, when a spokesperson of the education ministry was asked about the meeting, the official said that they have approached the law ministry to clarify a certain legal section in the court’s decision.
He added that the education ministry expects to receive a reply from the law ministry within a week while the court’s order will be implemented in letter and spirit.
Punjab could seal 0.1m private unregistered schools
The Punjab Education Ministry has decided to shut down some 100,000, unregistered private schools in the province after the registration deadline of April 12 expires.
The ministry has vowed to commence the process of sealing of all private educational institutions which did not submit registration papers by April 13.
On the directions of education secretary, education department teams have been going door-to-door across the 36 districts in the province to collect data regarding unregistered private educational institutions.
This data will be submitted to the district registration authorities by April 8. In Rawalpindi district alone, some 30 teams of the education department are conducting a survey.
Meanwhile, the All Pakistan Private School Management Association (APPSMA) President Abrar Ahmed Khan has accused the survey teams of harassing the administrations of different private schools to show their registration certificates.
“The authorities are charging fines worth Rs0.4 million by levelling various charges,” he claimed, adding that the teams were also threatening to close schools who did not comply.
He demanded that the Rawalpindi deputy commissioner take notice of this situation, adding that the association is mulling legal action against the Punjab government as soon as next week when a meeting of the private school administrations is set to meet.
Abrar further said that no school was legally liable to show its registration certificate to survey teams unless the government issues a notification for this purpose.
Meanwhile, the Rawalpindi District Education Authority said that as per the guidelines of the education ministry, institutions who submit their certificates by the deadline will face no action.
The official further said that they have completed data collection of around 70 per cent of private schools in the district and the remaining data is expected to be recorded by next week.
WITH ADDITIONAL INPUT FROM QAISER SHERAZI IN RAWALPINDI
Published in The Express Tribune, March 29th, 2019.