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Five out of 12 BS-20 Provincial Management Service (PMS) officers nominated for the 93rd National Management Course

(NMC) have withdrawn their nominations, citing personal reasons and health problems. No official letter has been issued in this regard yet. The regrets by the officers come after a long, sometimes ugly campaign, alleging that the DMG dominated provincial administrative hierarchy was reluctant to nominate senior PMS officers for the mandatory trainings. The association had also said that it was a deliberate ploy by the DMG officers to dampen the chances of PMS officers promotion to BS-21. This year, the Punjab government forwarded the names of 12 PMS officers to the ED for nomination. Five of the 12, namely Muhammad Ali Baloch, executive director the Lahore Art Council; Salman Ijaz, the Sports director general; Sahibzada Faiz Mahmood, Wafaq-i-Mohtasib; Maqsood Ahmed Lak, special secretary for the Local Government and Community Development and Abdul Rauf, director general Population Welfare (Punjab) withdrew their nominations. All of them, except Salman Ijaz, are above 55 years of age and near their retirement age. According to sources close to the officers, Mahmood and Ijaz moved in time to prevent the notifications of their nomination. Fayyaz, Abdur Rauf and Baloch withdrew their names after notifications were issued. The Punjab government maintained that the names were withdrawn without its knowledge. In a late development on Saturday, the Punjab government registered its protest with the federal government. The provincial government asked the Establishment Division why the names of the officials had been withdrawn, without consulting the provincial government. The secretary ED, according to sources privy to the details of the meeting, told the Punjab chief secretary that the officers could be nominated next year. Reacting to the helath grounds cited by some officers, a DMG officer said, Contrary to their claims they are attending offices regularly; without any health complaints. If they have any personal problems and/or are also ill, he suggested, they should resign. They can clearly not diligently discharge their duties in the circumstances they have quoted, he added. He opined that some of the officers had withdrawn their names because they were unsure of their ability to complete the course with good grades. Another reason could be reluctance to forego the perks and privileges of the high posts they occupy, the officer conjectured. Half jokingly, he added, during the course they would have to remain attentive. They would also be required to wear formal dress to attend lectures, seminars and discussions; something many PMS Officers have not done in a long time. Most of them dress informally while attending office. One of the five officers, speaking on condition of anonymity, said that he had withdrawn his name because he thought he could not cope with the strenuous course. Moreover, there is no guarantee that once we pass the course, we will get a promotion and a good posting. So why bother? he added. Rai Manzoor Nasir, the president of the PMS officers association said, We condemn withdrawal of nominations for reasons other than genuine ones. We will ask the government to get surety bonds from

whoever is nominated for the course the next time. Otherwise, they should be superseded while being considered for promotion. We will suggest that those next-in-line be sent in their place. The ED had warned the nominated officers that if anyone withdrew their names they alone will be responsible for the way it might affects their promotion prospects. The course that is to be held at the National School of Public Policy, Lahore will commence from August 2 and end on January 1, 2011. The completion of course is mandatory for promotion in BS-21. The ED has also nominated 77 BS-20 officers from various federal cadres; including 26 from the District Management Group (DMG) and14 from the Police Service of Pakistan (PSP).

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