Health secretary Asked BSEK Chief ’s Medical Condition

Karachi :October 07:The Sindh High Court on Thursday directed the secretary health to submit a report regarding the medical condition of former Board of Secondary Education Karachi (BSEK) chief, Anwar Ahmed Zai, who is under detention in a corruption reference.

The directives came on a petition by the matric board chief who had moved the court against his arrest in a NAB reference pertaining to illegal appointments in the Mirpurkhas board during his tenure as chairman from 2004 to 2007. The court had earlier directed the secretary health to constitute a medical board for examining Zai’s health and give in their opinion as to whether the petitioner could be adequately treated in prison, without any danger to his life.

NAB officials allege that Zai had appointed seven people to Grade 16 and above posts, without any advertisement and due process.

Seeking post-arrest bail for the matric board chief, his counsel denied the allegation and submitted that all the appointments were made on merit and in accordance with the rules.

The court was informed that the medical board’s report was not received yet. Adjourning the matter till October 18, the court directed the secretary health to submit the report at the next hearing.

NAB’s prosecutor had earlier filed comments before the SHC submitting that petitioner did not come before the court with clean hands and he filed petition to circumvent the normal process of the criminal proceedings. He submitted that accountability court took cognizance of the matter and petitioner was not entitled for any relief.

BSEK Chairman Anwar Ahmed Zai was arrested by NAB on charges of corruption, illegal appointments and out-of-turn promotions. He was alleged to have committed the crimes during his time as chairman Board of Intermediate Education Karachi and in-charge of examination boards in Mirpurkhas.

According to a NAB official, Zai would also be investigated for result tampering during his time at different boards and centres. Zai served as deputy director and district education officer Mirpurkhas, in 1990 he was appointed director education Karachi. He then went on to serve as additional secretary education, Sindh, additional secretary development finance and planning, and additional secretary academics.
Excessive cabinet members

The SHC directed the provincial government’s law officer and other advisers’ counsel to file comments on a petition challenging the appointment of excessive advisers and special assistants to the Sindh cabinet.

The petitioner, Moulvi Iqbal Haider, contends that Chief Minister Syed Murad Ali Shah has appointed 37 members of the Sindh assembly – or more than 22 percent of the total MPAs – to the Sindh cabinet, which was in violation of Article 130 (6) of the Constitution that stipulates that the strength of the Cabinet cannot exceed 11 percent of the total strength of MPAs.

He submitted that CM Murad Ali Shah had, on July 30, appointed 17 provincial ministers, advisers and special assistants and, later, further increased his cabinet’s strength by appointing nine more ministers and 11 special assistants.

The petitioner contended that the constitution scheme after the 18th Amendment clearly mentions that the strength of the cabinet would not be more than 11 percent, and the CM’s decision to hire more than the stipulated number was totally unlawful and unconstitutional.

He submitted that in terms of Article 92 and also Article 130 (11), the CM and the Prime Minister have the power to appoint their advisers but not more than five; however, the Sindh CM had appointed 18 members as ministers and 17 others as advisers and special assistants who enjoy status and privileges equal to those of provincial ministers.

The court was requested to declare that the appointment of excessive ministers, advisers and special assistants was a heavy burden upon the public exchequer and in gross violation of Article 130 (6) of the Constitution, therefore, the appointments more than 11 percent is unjust and un-constitutional.

At yesterday’s hearing, Additional Advocate General Mustafa Mahesar sought time to file comments on the petition, and the court granted till November 9 to do the needful.The news.