The Federal Cabinet, meeting was held on Tuesday, which presided over by the Prime Minister Imran Khan. The Cabinet meeting discussed a wide range of national issues but spent most of time in deliberation on the numbers of federal employees, their induction, salaries expenditures, nature of duties and ratio of officers and staff etc.
According to reports, Special Advisor to the Prime Minister on Institutional Reforms Dr. Ishrat Hussain presented recommendations of the committee regarding volume of the Federal Government employees, working mechanism, manpower in different ministries and departments, and their rationalization. The cabinet was informed that about 955,000 employees had been working in the Federal Government, out of them, about 565,000 employees were working in the secretariat whereas 390,000 employees had been working in autonomous, semi-autonomous and corporations. Dr. Ishrat Hussain further told the cabinet that out of the total number of employees, 95 per cent were working in grade 1-16 and their salaries cost 80-85 per cent of the total expenditures and ratio between officers and staff stood around 1:20 in general and 1:6 in Secretariat. It was further said that about 137,000 employees were inducted during 2016-17 in PML-N era. The Federal Cabinet was apprised that about 28 billion rupees had been saved so far through the rationalization efforts under the present government. In this regard, it was decided that through e-filing and e-office system, the ratio between the officers and staff would be brought down to a target of 1:3 under different phases.
PTI Government formed an institutional reforms committee at the beginning of its era to improve the efficiency and service delivery of the governmental institutions under the leadership of former governor State Bank Dr. Ishrat Hussain. However, after long deliberations and colorful presentations, Dr. Ishrat Hussain and his committee could not bring significant reform in any institutions ranging from PIA to State Bank and Post office to Parliament Secretariat and others. However, to display its efficiency, the reforms committee set its sail in the direction of the wind and mixed its voice with IMF. Ishrat Hussain put his knife on the poor government employees by weeding out the daily wagers and contract workers of PTV, Radio Pakistan, CDA, Education Department and several other autonomous institutions and government Departments. Dr. Ishrat along with Finance Department tried to stab the government employees by ceasing their monthly pension, commutation, fixation of basic salary, abolition of window pension and many other cuts in pay and allowances of the employees. The new items of Dr. Ishrat’s magic bag is over employment in federal entities, ratio of officer and staff and particularly 137,000 federal employees inducted during 2016-17 in PML-N era. It seems that government is aiming at these employees in near future. PTI came into power due to its fascinating public centered agenda which now turned into a vampire eating up its children, turning off candles of livelihood of poor masses by termination of their jobs, imposition of huge taxes and awful price hike. After, painful treatment with government employees in previous budget, now incumbent government is heading to initiate another anti-public drive in coming days. It is advisable to Dr. Ishrat Hussain and PTI government to let the poor live in this country, abolish the poverty not the poor because they would not remain in the office forever, therefore the government must follow the pro-people policies by bringing change in the system instead of lashing out on the employees.