NAP funds used ‘other ways’ in ‘good’ intention, Senate body told

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Shamim Mehmood

ISLAMABAD

The Senate Functional Committee on Human Rights in its meeting directed to Auditor General of Pakistan to include the ministry of Human Rights in this year’s audit programme and keep the committee posted on the progress.

The meeting was held under the chairmanship of Senator Mustafa Nawaz Khokhar here at the Parliament House on Tuesday and was attended among others by Senators Kamran Michael, Senator Dr Mehr Taj Roughani, Ayesha Raza Farooq, Usman Khan Kakar, Dr Jehanzeb Jamaldini, Sana Jamali, Joint Secretary Human Rights, and Additional Auditor General Zia ur Rehman.

The committee was told by the ministry that news regarding misuse of funds and allegedly high salaries to consultants hired by the ministry was not based on facts and was refuted by the ministry. The ministry also remarked that the money allocated by the government for National Action Plan (NAP) was used in other ways but the intention was good and the ministry always conducts third party audits of its funds. It is to remind that the Senate Committee on HR took notice on the news published in the Daily Morning Mail for hiring consultant on hefty package and misused the funds allocated for NAP.

The committee also discussed the matter of ongoing protests of State Life Insurance Company Limited employees who have been terminated from service. The Committee was told that there are a total of 155,000 sales representatives and they haven’t been terminated, 21,700 sales officers were offered to get promoted but only 8,000 of them got themselves registered. It was told that only the post of sales officers has been removed and not any individual.

The Committee discussed issue of blocking of CNICs of Malik Attaullah Bajore and his family. The matter was raised by Senator Usman Khan Kakar during proceedings of the Senate through a point of public importance on 30th April, 2019. Attahullah and his son informed the committee that their family have offered sacrifices in war against terror but unfortunately they are being politically victimized and CNICs have been blocked.

He also produced the appreciation certificates issued by the LEAs in the name of Attaullah for showing patriotism. The Committee Chairman and members of the Committee were taken by surprise. Malik Attaullah informed that NADRA has blocked their CNICs on the recommendations of District Level Committee which is headed by a Deputy Commissioner.  The Committee summoned DLC and other concerned officials to brief the Committee and sort out the matter amicably. The Committee, however, expressed its displeasure over the maltreatment meted out to the noble family.

Regarding matter pertaining to protests by the State Life Field Association against the decisions of State Life Insurance Corporation (SLIC), it directed the management to resolve the matters amicably. The Chairman of the Committee ordered to Managing Director of Utility stores and Chairman State Life should resolve the issue of employees with Union till the next week.

Utility Stores Corporation Employees Union also informed the Committee about the recent arrests of the representatives of the Union and registration of FIRs. The Committee directed the USC management to adopt a peaceful approach instead of harassing its work force. It further directed that both the Management and the Union would resolve issues through dialogue and negotiations. Chairman of the Committee observed that poor community is suffering as the stores are short of items. MD USC and representatives of the Union explained their position before the committee.

The Committee also took notice of the registration of FIRs under 7ATA against PTM workers for holding public gathering in Sindh and Balochistan. It directed the concerned authorities to withdraw the FIRs registered under ATA.