IHC allows ‘forced’ retirement of incompetent bureaucrats
ISLAMABAD – The Islamabad High Court (IHC) has turned down a slew of petitions against a law introduced by the incumbent government to send the senior bureaucrats with poor performance packing.
A bench headed by Justice Mohsin Akhtar Kayani heard three identical petitions that challenged the Civil Servants (Directory Retirement from Service) Rules, 2020.
By dismissing the petitions, the court has allowed the government to prematurely retire the officers who earned average performance evaluation reports, twice recommended for suspension by the Central Selection Board, Departmental Selection Board or Departmental Promotion Board or twice not recommended for promotion by the high-powered selection board, local media reported.
The petitions were filed by three presons – BS-21 officer Ahmed Hanif Orakzai, former deputy director of the Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) Sheikh Zafar and Mohsin Shah.
The petitioners argued that after accepting the offer of voluntary return under Section 25 of the National Accountability Ordinance, 1999, the retirement board/committee could not punish the civil servants, adding that rules have been introduced by the government in violation of the existing laws.
On the other hand, Assistant Advocate General Barrister Mumtaz said that Section 13 of the Civil Servants Act, 1973, has explained the criteria for dismissal of incompetent officers, Dawn reported.
The court in the ruling remarked, “It is not a vested right of a civil servant to serve after completion of his 20 years of service till age of superannuation, rather it depends upon the will of the competent authority or pleasure of the government as highlighted in Section 4 of the Civil Servants Act, 1973, such discretion has to be regulated through a criteria mentioned in Rule 5 of the Civil Servants (Directory Retirement from Service) Rules, 2020.”
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