Two-day holiday: Interior ministry issues notification

Published: October 14, 2011
Office timings from Monday to Thursday will be 8 am to 4 pm.

Office timings from Monday to Thursday will be 8 am to 4 pm.

ISLAMABAD: The interior ministry has issued a notification for two weekly holidays at all public and private offices, Express 24/7 reported Friday.

The notification will be binding on all government, semi-government and private institutions under the control of the federal government.

(Read: Power crisis: Federal cabinet approves two-day weekend)

After the implementation of the notification, the office timings will be 8 am to 4 pm from Monday to Thursday, while on Friday there will be a one and a half hour lunch and prayer break from 12.30 pm to 2 pm.

According to the notification, selected branches of commercial banks will continue to work on Saturday.

No notification from Sindh, Balochistan

The governments of Sindh and Balochistan have so far not issued any notifications announcing two-weekly holidays.

The two provinces are undecided on whether to observe two off days in a week or not, Express 24/7 reported.

Punjab and Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa have already rejected the federal government’s decision to observe two holidays in a week.

SC summons full court meeting on two off days

Chief Justice of Pakistan Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry has summoned a full court meeting to take a decision on the matter of two weekly holidays.

Sources have said the meeting will take place on October 17.

The meeting was called after the apex court received the government notification. The court has

The court has rejected the government’s decision and has instead ordered court administrations to avoid using air conditioners until 11:30am to save energy.

Registrar of Lahore High Court has also said that the High and Lower courts will remain open on Saturday.

SBP announces operation closure on Saturday, Sunday

The State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) has announced to that all its operation and field offices will be closed on Saturday and Sunday.

(Read: Two-day holiday: SBP awaits government notification)

According to SBP spokesperson Syed Wasimuddin, the bank has decided this in connection with the government’s announcement of a two-day holiday plan.

He added that the commercial banks will have a choice of whether to close their operations on Saturday or not regardless of SBP’s directives.

However, commercial banks have been told to adjust their timings as per the implementation of the new plan according to which the commercial bank’s public dealing timings have been reduced which will be from 9 am to 5.30 pm (with lunch/prayer break from 1.30 pm to 2.15 pm) Monday to Thursday and 9 am to 6.00 pm (with lunch/prayer break from 1 pm to 2.30 pm) on Friday.

Earlier on October 12, the federal cabinet had approved two day weekends for those industries which are completely dependent on electricity and gas.

However, industrialists and businessmen had urged the government to take back the cabinet decision to follow a two-day holiday in a week saying it will further slowdown the already sluggish economic growth in the country.

Correction: An earlier version of this post incorrectly stated the bank timings. The correction has been made.


Given the current power crisis, are two weekly holidays for offices a good idea?

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Reader Comments (28)

  • Karim
    Oct 14, 2011 - 2:42PM

    it will effect the economy through enhanced recreational activities and thus will provide a boost to consumption led economic growth.


  • Karim
    Oct 14, 2011 - 2:44PM

    In this Digital Age, it’s very hard for us to “turn off” our connection to our job, friends, family and the world.
    People nowadays work more than ever, all due to the easy nature of modern technology. it means something to be efficient and productive, but we all have to draw a line somewhere, after all, we are not robots.


  • Parvez
    Oct 14, 2011 - 2:48PM

    The patient is suffering from cancer and is being given fake asprins as treatment.


  • Accountability
    Oct 14, 2011 - 3:14PM

    What a joke really. Like which office has people come in at 8am. Heck they don’t come at 9am…


  • Sadia
    Oct 14, 2011 - 3:24PM

    The article is wrong about bank timings:
    As reported by other bankers,

    banking hours for Monday-Thursday would be 9.00 A.M. to 5.00 P.M., while on Friday the transactions in banks would continue up to 6.00 P.M.


  • Faisal Rauf
    Oct 14, 2011 - 4:10PM

    Means Commercial Banks are on their own to open or not. What is the logic of the notification than. We need to be efficent and smart instead of the old Donkey work approach.Recommend

  • JJ
    Oct 14, 2011 - 4:30PM

    May i know what about GOVERNMENT HOSPITALSOPDs also close on saturdays?


  • Cautious
    Oct 14, 2011 - 5:25PM

    A holiday is suppose to honor/celibate something – not conserve power.


  • Khan
    Oct 14, 2011 - 6:15PM

    These politicians need to grow up .. they act like kids … We need to build dams and create more electricity and only that will solve the problem but its been more than 3 years of this incompetent government and they have not started to build any big dam yet.


  • malikuzair
    Oct 14, 2011 - 7:00PM

    plz send me notificattion for holiday my idea is no 2 weekly holiday


  • Kazmis
    Oct 14, 2011 - 7:22PM

    I remember in blast 30 years the two holidays topics was discussed just to conserve Petrol/Diesel on weekend, which was a fair calculation. The government many times implemented, but the same was failed shortly. This time again the fate is the same.

    Actually the problem is not recreation on weekends but thousands of employees work in Part-time as either a second job or a small business, and they are deprived by this new routine of delayed timings. Moreover the conservation of electric energy is not possible in new timings but more energy will be consumed.


  • Mohammad Ali Siddiqui
    Oct 14, 2011 - 9:29PM

    The notification of Ministry of Interior for two-day weekend is not clear. Federal Government and its associate offices will be closed on Saturdays and Sundays, whereas all private offices will remain open on Saturdays without giving break to the poor employees.

    We must learn from the Western countries as how they are observing two-day weekend and still their economies are booming.

    Unfortunately neither the rulers, nor the masses do understand as what is the long term benefit of two-day weekly holidays.

    As a nation, we are not up to the mark even in the 21st century and debate unnecessarily without legitimate arguments whether Pakistan should observe two-day weekly holidays.

    Not only we will be able to save the electricity and gas, but it will also reduce pollution in the country.

    I would suggest to the Federal Government to make the Provincial Governments understand the necessity of having two-day weekly holidays.

    I am not sure that despite the fact that the world has become a global village, few handful selfish people are opposing the idea of having a two-day weekly holidays in Pakistan.

    Two-day weekly holidays should be observed across the board in the entire country.


  • Oct 14, 2011 - 10:33PM

    This is very very good decision by the Government we should accept this by heart because due to this good step we can save electric and businessmen should have accept this decision and open the markets early in the morning and close in evening like this marriage hall should be close before 10 pm Inshaallah we can be developed like first world countries. I again welcome to government decision i am very happy and i salam to PM and Presidant of Pakistan my all prayers with you. Thanks…..


  • freehussaini
    Oct 14, 2011 - 10:36PM

    More electricity, more problems. Less electricity, less problems. No electricity, no problems.

    The khulafaw’e rawshideen had no electricity problems.

    Declare electricity harawm, shut down the power generation plants and live happily without any problems like the subjects of the khulafaw.


  • Oct 14, 2011 - 11:03PM

    please show my comments


  • faizan
    Oct 14, 2011 - 11:15PM

    @Mohammad Ali Siddiqui:
    This country where 34% population is living below poverty line and where majority only take a meal once back from labour (if available) we are enjoying 2 weekly holidays. If you don’t have electricity then shut down your ACs not offices, your escalators and lifts not industry,your ceremonial lights instead of poor man’s stove. When this man’s child would be crying/dying with hunger and he will come to snatch every thing, what this government will do? That day is not very off dear. Just think…..


  • Hady Ali
    Oct 15, 2011 - 12:16AM

    Its matter of absolute sham for the Govt. which is not planning to go for production but going for two holidays. Next year if energy crisis gets inclination as expected the Govt will say we must have three holidays and on day Govt will say to close all Pakistan to save energy.
    My optimistic question to all those lazy and otiose who support two day weekend,
    you cant finish your work in 6 days so how you will do that in 5?????
    what about the queues in front of NADRA???
    what about the queues in front of Banks for bill payment and pension receiving???
    what about the queues of numerous cases for judiciary???
    At Last
    I expect that at least 40% of our glorified nation will even support the idea of 7 days weekend.


  • Mohammad Ali Siddiqui
    Oct 15, 2011 - 12:48AM


    The figure quote by you that 34% people of Pakistan are living below poverty line is wrong.

    You don’t work as a lobourer and that is why you do not know how much an ordinary labourer is earning in Pakistan. These labourers are earning more money than an ordinary graduate of Pakistan.

    You go and see a labourer’s house and you will find each and every thing in the house which a middle class person cannot afford to think to buy.

    The only reason why the rich and mighty people oppose for a two-day weekly holiday is that they do not want to pay to a labourer overtime, which is double the amount of a single days salary.

    The labourers also have a family and they have the right to look after them and not just the rich and mighty people who woke up at 12 noon and then go to their offices.

    After 64 years of independence, the Pakistani culture has not been changed. The rich and mighty people only think that they are the human beings and not the labourers and that is why they always the rich and mighty want the labourers to work all the seven days of the week.

    This is a inhuman attitude and it is clearly and blatantly human rights violation of human beings in Pakistan.

    If the government wants to stop the abuse of human rights in Pakistan then why there is so much fuss about the government’s decision to observe two-day weekly holidays.

    It will provide more opportunity for the labour class to earn more money and they will not be sleeping without having meals.

    If I would have been in the government to implement this order, I would have taken very strict measures that the law should be implemented across the board and no one should openly violate the law.

    The government must ask the Police and Rangers to make sure that all the offices and shopping malls should remain close on Saturdays and Sundays. What the government need to enforce is the shop act, a law which is been put under the carpet by the business community.

    All shopping malls should be opened at 9am sharp and must be closed by the sunset and not a single minute late.


  • A concerned Pakistani
    Oct 15, 2011 - 2:16AM

    They want to introduce two holidays per week to conserve energy. Shouldn’t they be taking measures to enhance the current supply because ultimately the demand will increase. What are they going to do in the summers, make it a three day work week?

    Kar chuka Pakistan tarakee, Pakistan ka Allah Hafiz!


  • A concerned Pakistani
    Oct 15, 2011 - 2:20AM


    My friend your thinking is not much different from rest of us Pakistanis. But you need to appreciate the fact that ultimately energy demand would increase, specially in the summers.
    The right thing would be to close all shops at 7 PM (like the rest of the world) and start new
    projects to produce more energy. Closing offices and banks on Saturdays is not the right decision. Kaum phelay hee 6 dinon main kaam nahn kartee, 5 main kia khaak karay gee. Kar chuka iss speed say tarkee Pakistan.

    With policies like this one, Pakistan Allah Hafiz!


  • A concerned Pakistani
    Oct 15, 2011 - 3:36AM

    @Mohammad Ali Siddiqui:

    I am afraid Siddiqui Sb I completely disagree with you. You mention in your comment that people don’t give valid evidence and reasons to support their arguments, I am afraid you are the one who doesn’t even understand how serious the matter is, specially the ignorance of our government towards the shortage of supply in the energy sector. I agree they would be able to save ‘some’ energy if they give Saturdays off. But you also need to realize that with time the demand would increase and unless we take some real measures (e.g. increase in production) against this worsening energy crises, we would eventually lead to a one day working week.

    We are a developing nation and we need to work harder than the developed countries to try and compete and achieve what they already have. I don’t even have to mention the inefficiency specially in Government institutions. We need a seven day working week to survive and not a five day working week. If we don’t take any drastic measures, that would lead to massive destruction.

    Pakistan ka Allah hee Hafiz!


  • Maroof
    Oct 15, 2011 - 10:20AM

    A two day weekend WILL SAVE energy. It will also boost economic activity. People will have time on Saturdays to go shopping during daylight. I would suggest that the bazaars should open on Sundays also, but only during daytime. There will be more people in the markets as there will be less traffic and more parking space on saturdays and sundays. Unfortunately, the typical “dukandaar” does not undestand this and follows their leaders blindly.


  • freehussaini
    Oct 15, 2011 - 12:29PM


    Would any body dare ask how much electricity is consumed by those tens of thousands of centrifuges running 24/7 to produce enriched uranium for the nuclear bombs?


  • faizan
    Oct 15, 2011 - 2:36PM

    @Mohammad Ali Siddiqui:
    Please think scientifically and read these stats. If you want more I can provide you dozens of links for study.
    According to the Human Development Index (HDI), 60.3% of Pakistan’s population lives on under $2 a day, and some 22.6% live under $1 a day.

    Number of rural poor (million, approximate) (2009) 38,638,813.0
    Poverty headcount ratio at rural poverty line (% of rural population) (1999) 35.9
    Poverty headcount ratio at national poverty line (% of population) (1999) 32.6
    Income share held by lowest 20% (2005) 9.1
    Percent of people living below the human poverty index line(*): 33.4%.

    And please don’t say this is” farangi propoganda”


  • faizan
    Oct 15, 2011 - 2:43PM

    If I give you facts about this WORTHY COUNTER THREAT, I will be labelled unpatriotic, may be Kafir or heretic.If only this money was used for education and power production, Pakistan would have been the richest country in Asia. Believe me.


    Oct 15, 2011 - 3:12PM

    Dear Pakistani Bothers and Sisters. AOA

    First of all we should have a strong law and order situation for every pakistani and foreigner with punishment who ever break the law.

    As a muslim our all days activities should start with FAJAR prayers and end them up with the ESHA prayers. In this way we will have a long working day, have more day light and save more power.

    The govt must address this problem of energy crises for once and for all bcz this is not a matter of one day. If we cant do this our self then we must invite China to help us out at all cost.

    I do recommend two days off accross the country but the working time should be STRICTLY eight hrs (Say from 6am to 2pm) with out any break. In this way if any body wants to do an additional job he should be encouraged and he will have sufficient time.

    All the Industries / Hospitals / should be running 7day and 24 hrs a week with two days rest to their employees on different days (Orientation basis).

    All the big bosses should be debarred from using their official vehicles, phones, during these two holidays. this will also save fuel energy.

    I think if we are sincere and want to change our fate we can do so and its never to late, if these instructions are followed. Good Luck. GOD SAVE PAKISTAN FROM ALL SORTS OF CULPRIT AND EVIL PEOPLE AMIN. PAKISTAN ZINDABAD Recommend

  • freehussaini
    Oct 15, 2011 - 10:05PM


    Thanks. Your post implies you have the information. The purpose of name-calling is to intimidate, humiliate and subjugate people into silence. Let them call us names and let us speak up.

    Please, post the information. Please! Please! Please!

    Thanks! Thanks! Thanks!


    Oct 21, 2011 - 11:13AM

    Yes i strongly recommend two weekly holidays because in all round the world there is still 2 weekly holidays practice and they are progressing? then why we not


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