— LHC summons University of Sargodha VC
–Additional registrar and director academics among the illegal appointments
LAHORE: The issue of illegal appointments by University of Sargodha (UOS) has become severer as the Higher Education Department (HED) and Public Accounts Committee (PAC) have taken notice of the grave violation of merit while the university administration is still reluctant to de-notify those who were appointed without following the due process, Pakistan Today has learnt.
As per the details, former UOS Vice Chancellor (VC) Dr Riazul Haq had appointed his brother, Chaudhry Izharul Haq as the additional registrar during his tenure without following the due process as the post was not advertised in the newspapers and he was not removed even by the incumbent VC Dr Ishtiaq Ahmed.
The HED has directed the university to de-notify illegal appointments, but the VC is not implementing the directions of the department while granting important positions to illegally appointed officials.
Meanwhile, the matter has been brought in the court as a petitioner, Shafiq Mirza has challenged the illegal appointments through a lawyer, following which the court expressing deep concern over the violation of rules has summoned the incumbent VC to appear in person on March 29 and explain the reasons for the continuity of illegal appointments.
“Many other family members, relatives and friends were illegally appointed and promoted by the then vice chancellor Dr Riaz,” says the petition.
The petitioner further claims that the former VC set the worst example of nepotism by making recruitments on important slots without following the due procedure to adjust his near and dear ones. After recruiting the people, spacious official residences were also allotted to these people, states the petition.
The counsel for the petitioner referred to the audit reports and the higher education department orders dated June 8, 2017, and the letters of November 24, 2017, and January 12, 2018, through which the HED secretary had taken notice against the drastic illegalities.
The petition also contended that the recent audit report questioned the continuity of illegal appointments by the current VC Dr Ishtiaq and objected delay in compliance with higher education secretary’s orders to de-notify them. The advocate for the petitioner revealed that Dr Riazul Haq, an ex-teacher of the Bahaudin Zakariya University (BZU), was appointed as the VC of Sargodha’s newly born university back in 2003 and soon after his entry he started carrying out such illegal activities and filled the university with his dear ones.
The court was also informed through the petition that Izharul Haq managed to appoint his friend Muhammad Bashir, who was previously working in Gujranwala at a lower grade, as the varsity’s director academics. The court observed that the illegally appointed officials received promotions and continued to illegally occupy higher positions and spacious residences despite the fact that these illegalities appeared in the yearly audit books of the auditor general of Pakistan. The petition further states that the Punjab Chief Minister Inspection Team’s (CMIT) inquiry reports also raised eyebrows on them.
The PAC in the meantime directed the HED to rectify the matters erupted out of drastic illegalities and take action against those responsible. The HED secretary, as a result, ordered the university to cancel such illegal appointments made without advertisements in the newspapers, but the university administration was reluctant to de-notify all those appointed illegally.
A senior faculty member from Law Department of the UOS, speaking at the condition anonymity said that it was a matter of great frustration for regular university employees that they were never given a residence on campus but on the other hand, those appointed illegally were residing in spacious residences of the campus.
When contacted, UOS Spokesperson Faisal Aziz told Pakistan Today that he would not comment on the issue as the matter was sub-judice.