Several institutions and departments – including the superior courts – have failed to enforce a minimum 5 per cent quota for minorities in the workplace, as mandated by a Supreme Court decree, according to minority representatives. The apex court had issued the landmark ruling in June 2014.
In the first application, submitted by Punjab government’s member of the Minority Advisory Council Chaudhry Mushtaq Gill, the petitioner has presented a list of nine institutions, including the Supreme Court, Lahore High Court, Pakistan Military Academy Kakul, Pakistan Air Force, Pakistan Rangers Punjab, which have not offered a five per cent job quota to minorities.
While presenting fresh job advertisements of some of the departments, the petitioner said that the said institutions are trying to fill out different posts without adhering to the quota policy.
He told the court that the National Database Registration Authority advertised 299 posts for minorities in 2012-13 but never recruited the minorities against the existing posts.
He has also claimed that property belonging to Christian minorities situated in Jhang district has been illegally acquired by Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) MNA Akram Sheikh. Already an application has been submitted before the Punjab chief minister against the illegal sale but no action has been taken so far.
Separately, Pakistan Hindu Council patron in chief and the PML-N MNA Dr Ramesh Kumar Vankwani has also requested the court to seek details of advertisements for recruitment in government departments since June 19, 2014 and allocation of five per cent quota to the minorities.
In a written application filed in view of the court’s February 11 order, he claimed that the federal as well as provincial governments have not taken any positive step for the protection of minorities’ rights as per the court’s June 19, 2014 verdict.
Dr Ramesh inquired about the measures that have been taken for finalisation of curricula to protect minorities and to boost interfaith harmony.
He has also requested the court to ask the government as to what steps it has taken for the promulgation of the Hindu Marriage Act.
The applicant has also complained that some unknown culprits have damaged, humiliated and insulted the idols of Hindu gods at Hinglaj Temple situated at Makli district in Thatta. “Some culprits have also damaged our Radha Kishan Temple situated at Mirpurkhas Road, Hyderabad and also attacked and injured two women,” he said.
Dr Ramesh has alleged that some culprits tried to take possession of a Hindu colony and a temple situated at Hyderabad’s Fateh Chowk, adding that the colony is in possession of the community for last 100 year.
“Culprits involved in the attack on our four temples in Sindh have not been arrested and punished and the competent authority has not taken any action against them,” he said.
The applicant has requested the apex court to ask how many non-Muslim religious places have been registered yet and what security measures have been taken to protect them.
Published in The Express Tribune, February 17th, 2015.
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