LAHORE: A writ petition was filed in the Lahore High Court on Friday against the Punjab Education Foundation (PEF) for giving one-time exemption to its 80 employees including senior officers whose degrees and experience certificates could not be verified from the Higher Education Commission (HEC) and other concerned departments.
The petitioner, Advocate Chaudhry Shoaib Saleem filed the petition and alleged that more than 1000 employees were working in the PEF and verification of their degrees and experience certificates was mandatory as per the Contract Appointment Rules 2005 during the first three months of their service.
According to the documents provided to the petitioner as per the Right to Information Act, verification of degrees and experience certificates of all employees was carried out by the PEF, however, the degrees and experience certificates of 80 employees ranging from lower staff to directors could not be verified by the PEF authorities.
Ch Shoaib further pleaded that instead of terminating all such employees or initiating an enquiry against them, the PEF Board of Directors held a meeting on May 13, 2016, and exempted all such employees to give them legal protection with retrospective effect so that no disciplinary action could be taken against them in the future as well.
The petitioner said it was a unique example of corruption and favoritism in any public department where 80 persons including senior officers were drawing a salary in millions notwithstanding their educational certificates were deficient, fake or not verified.
The petitioner contended that all such appointments were completely illegal and tantamount to mocking justice by giving them one-time exemption from verification of their degrees.
“Such illegal and unlawful appointments have not only damaged the reputation of the organisation but also dented the national exchequer by a long margin. The total financial loss to the PEF and the government of Punjab caused by these illegalities stand at Rs500 million,” he added.
The petitioner advocate prayed the court to declare the act of the PEF Board of Directors illegal and terminate them from service forthwith.