Balochistan is underrepresented in postings of foreign missions abroad, with the only official hailing from there, out of the 209, serving as driver for diplomats.
The 209 officials were assigned for diplomatic missions in the UK, US, France, Germany, United Arab Emirates, Bahrain, Qatar and Kuwait since the current government came into power.
A senior official from the foreign ministry termed Balochistan’s case a “coincidence.” “Normally, posting works through merit and rotation.”
Currently, Haji Mira Jan, the only official from Balochistan, is serving as a driver at the Pakistan High Commission in London.
Several senior officers from Balochistan have been posted on important positions, said the official. “For instance, Khalid Aziz Babar from Balochistan is serving as ambassador to Tehran. Senior officer, Ghalib Iqbal, who is likely to serve as ambassador to Paris, also hails from Balochistan.”
Gilgit-Baltistan (G-B) also has only one official, Yasir Hussain, posted as third secretary in Berlin. However, G-B’s ‘underrepresentation’ is less glaring as it is a smaller region.
Documents made available to The Express Tribune stated that out of foreign mission postings by the current government 130 people were appointed from Punjab, 21 from Sindh, 33 from Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa, 7 each from the Federally Administered Tribal Areas and Islamabad and five from Azad Jammu and Kashmir.
Five persons were appointed on a merit basis while one official was posted from G-B.
The five officials appointed on merit basis include office assistant Muhammad Sharif designated in Washington DC, Haider Ali Jaffery serving as stenographer in New York, Shafiq Zia serving as accountant in Paris, Azeem Mian serving as stenotypist at Paris and Muhammad Aslam Shah serving as accountant in Kuwait.
Published in The Express Tribune, December 29th, 2012.
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