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The Civil Service under the Revolutionary Government in Pakistan

Author(s): Albert Gorvine


Source: Middle East Journal, Vol. 19, No. 3 (Summer, 1965), pp. 321-336
Published by: Middle East Institute
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THE CIVILSERVICEUNDER THE


REVOLUTIONARYGOVERNMENTIN
PAKISTAN
AlbertGorvine
I

in their
richinheritance
havebothshareda particularly
NDIA andPakistan

institutionsof administration.'For in no other area of the world did


GreatBritainbequeatha greatercompetencethanto the militaryand civil
servicesof undividedIndia. Thoughformerlyused as instrumentsof control,
after independencethe two servicesbecamethe bedrockuponwhich the new
nationscouldstand. In colonialIndiatherewereno finercareersthanin these
two servicesand this prestigewas markedlycarriedforwardin the new nation
of Pakistan. These two serviceshave been regardedas major sourcesof
strengthby successivegovernmentssince the partitionof India and the independence of Pakistan. Both services enjoyed distinguishedtraditionsand
recordsof service. Both stayedaloof and detachedfrom internecinepolitical
squabbles;both were Western trainedand orientedin outlook. Indeed,the
early historyof Pakistanwas largely based upon their collaboration-which
had been establishedand maintainedin the yearsprecedingindependence.
of the new stateof Pakistanhavedonemuchto preserve
The administrators
what they thoughtwas worthyand desirableof their proudheritage.2They
have been particularlysuccessfulin doing so though in passing they have
inadvertentlypreservedmany of the conditionsassociatedwith colonial rule.
Colonial India had been governedby a minute numberof Europeans.
services.AlongThese Europeansservedat the pinnade of the administrative
side them servedalso a few Hindusand Muslims. All levers of powerwere
in Europeanhands. As rulers,they kept a greatsocialdistancebetweenthemselves and the lower levels of the administrativehierarchyand the general
public,in spite of frequentinspectiontripsto theirdistricts.
When the Britishleft and partitioncame, the places of Europeanswere
filled by Pakistanis.But herefundamentalchangesstopped. The gap between
the administrative
elite and the rest of the serviceswas maintainedand even
enlarged. The serviceswere kept apart and fragmented,each with its own
1. Keith Callard,Pakistan,A Political Study, (London: GeorgeAllen and Unwin Ltd., 1957)
p. 284.
2. Ralph Braibanti,"The Civil Service of Pakistan,A TheoreticalAnalysis" South Atlantic
Quarterly,Spring 1959, passim.
'$ ALBERT
GORVINE,
a professor of political science, is the ExecutiveDirector of the Research
Center in ComparativePolitics and Administration,BrooklynCollege, City Universityof New
York.
321

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patternof pay and rewards,its duties,its posts and privileges,and its sphere
of activity. Each servicekept everyother service,especiallyinferiorservices,
at arm's length. Ironically,new administrativeleaderscontinuedto believe
that they representedthe people, a myth that was firmlycherishedin the old
ICS by all membersof the administrative
elite. The mythand the peoplewho
held it are at the heartof muchof the achievements
of Pakistanand of many
opportunitieslost. And muchof the storywe have to tell is imbeddedin the
Civil Serviceof Pakistan(CSP)-in its particularexclusiveness,in its ambivalence to politicalinvolvement,in its visionarydevotionto duty,in its administrativeimpotenceand in its collectiveanxieties.
The Civil and MilitaryServicesin the Pre-Revolutionary
Period
The storyof the CSPis a storyof devotionto duty. Underits leadership,
but with the assistanceof the otherservices,the governmentof Pakistanbegan
operationsat the time of independencein the hallwaysand corridorsof makeshift buildingsin Karachi.
Inevitably,the massivetasksof nationbuildingfell to the administrators.
There was much to be done. Refugeeshad to be settled as best they could.
Abandonedland had to be dividedand put to cultivationas soon as possible.
Law and orderhad to be establishedin the tribalareas,and an attemptmade
to assertthe sovereigntyof the new Pakistan.An entireadministrative
apparatus had to be establishedto carryout the manyfunctionsof statepower. The
best tributepaid to the competenceof these civil servantsis the fact that
Pakistandid not collapsein its first90 days.
The zeal and enthusiasmof buildinga new nationmanagedto carrythe
countryforwardin its earlydaysdespitethe deathof its founder,Mohammed
Ali Jinnah,and the assassinationof his successor,LiaqatAli Khan. All too
soon though the civil servantsbecame embroiledin a struggle with the
emergingelites of the politicalparties.As a majorsourceof nationaldecisions,
the CSP soon conflictedwith a wide variety of sectional and entrenched
interests.
Eventuallythe powerful centrifugalforces within the new countrywere
overcomeand the provincesof West Pakistanwereconsolidatedinto one unit.8
New subdivisions,differentfrom the old provinces,were demarcatedand civil
servantswere given chargeof the new units. As politicaland sectionalpressuresincreased,conflictingclaimsfor scarceresourcesdevelopedbetweenEast
and West Pakistan. Within West Pakistanitself, Punjabisand Pathans,
Punjabisand Sindhis,refugeesand non-refugeesall contestedfor the limited
3. Callard,op. cit., pp. 183-193.

THE CIVIL SERVICEIN PAKISTAN

323

spoils of government.Politicalretaliationbecamea way of life and the civil


servantswere obligedto ameliorateits harshness.Inevitably,the civil servant
becameenmeshedin politics. For example,secretariesof government,ordered
to performactionswhich they consideredillegal, beganto ask for suchorders
in writing;this immediatelyreducedthe numberof theseextra-legaldirectives
and many an excess was suppressedsimplybecausethe secretarydemanded
his ordersin writing.Inescapably,the practiceswithinthe civil servicedegenerated and civil servants became the victims of political promotionsand
transfers.This interferenceplayedhavoc with the unity and integrityof the
service,morale degeneratedand the incidenceof corruptionbegan to grow.
As the enthusiasmof the early days of independencewaned and the
political problemsintensified,the countryturnedto the men who constituted
the frameworkupon which the entirestructurehad rested. In 1955, threeof
the most importantmen in the Cabinetwere militaryor civil serviceofficials.
ChaudriMohammedAli, who had been SecretaryGeneraland head of the
civil service,was FinanceMinister.GeneralIskandirMirza,who was to become
GovernorGeneral,was Ministerof Interior,and GeneralAyub Khan, who
was to becomePresidentafterthe Revolutionof 1958,wasMinisterof Defense.
The keys to powerwere in theirhandsand the portentof futuredevelopments
shouldhavebeeneasilydiscerned.
The Revolution
The yearsprecedingthe Revolutionwere timesof anxietyand trouble.Disordersculminatedin the declarationof martiallaw by GeneralIskandirMirza,
now Presidentunder a new constitution.GeneralMirzaappointedwhat he
considereda nationallyacceptedCabinetto bolsterthe prestigeof the governmentand AyubKhanbecamemartiallaw administrator.Not evenhis extreme
actioncouldhelp Mirzato disassociatehimselffromthe priorstateof disorder
and corruption.Within two weeks Mirzahimself had been sent to exile in
Londonand the Revolutionhad begun.
In contrastwith the periodthat had fatheredit, the Revolutionwas a quiet
and subduedaffair. Ayub Khan assumedthe Presidencybut Mirza'sCabinet
was left strictlyalone. In searchof a genuinebreakwith the past, Ayubwas
carefulto identifyhis authoritywith that of the Revolution.4A good deal of
popularsupportwas generatedby the Revolution.The impositionof martial
law broughtprices down; hoardingstoppedand scarcegoods reappearedon
the market;a grace period for the paymentof back taxes resultedin the
collectionof 75 milliondollars;organizedsmuggling,previouslyimmunefrom
4. Hugh Tinker India & Pakistan,A Political Analysis (New York: FrederickA. Praeger,
1962) p. 84.

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attackin EastandWest Pakistanwas attacked,and even a few politicianswere


jailed.
It is generallyreportedthat the CSP joined the popularacclaimof the
Revolution. Indeed, Khalid Bin Sayeed, a shrewd analyst of Pakistani affairs,
stated that "the basic characterof the martial law regime is that it is a partner-

ship betweenthe armyand the civil service."5But this view, just as the one
that the CSP greeted the Revolutionwith enthusiasm,is truly a vast oversimplification.The union betweenthe CSPand the militaryservicewas something that occurredduring the course,not at the beginning,of the revolutionarygovernment.At the beginningof the martiallaw regime,screening
committeeswere set up at the centerand in the provincesto assessthe integrity
and efficiencyof the governmentservices.6Armymen sat on thesecommissions,
procedureswereconfidentialandratherhaphazard,andthe processwas entirely
in camera. Soon after the committeeswere formed, General Ayub Khan
promisednot to "have any hesitationin getting rid of those who fail and
entrustingtheirworkto thosewho can do the job."7A few old ICSmen were
quicklypurged. There is good reasonto believethat the CSPwas frightened
at the beginningof the Revolution;and naturallythe threatof being purged
did not stimulatean enthusiasticresponsetowardthe Revolution.
Muchcloserto the truthis the assertionthat the CSPwas frightenedinto
submission.It did not criticizethe militaryand theirplans, largelybecauseit
felt that whole heartedacceptancewas neededto safeguardits own positions.
In part, though,the CSPperceivedthat AyubKhan'sRevolutionmight well
preventthe eruptionof a moreexplosiverevolutionfrom below,whichit saw
comingin the anxiouseventsbeforethe martiallaw regime.
In realitythe partnershipof the CSPwith the militarycame earlyin the
revolutionaryregime, though it came after the CSP had submitteditself to
militaryleadership.Thatthe CSPsubmittedcanbe gleanedfromthe statement
of Mr. Aziz Ahmed, CSP SecretaryGeneralof the governmentof Pakistan,
as earlyas March8, 1959:
Given the right type of leadershipthe Civil Serviceswere fully competentto
deliverthe goods. He cited. . . the successfulhandlingof the chaoticsituation
that arosein the wake of partitionand the achievements
of the new regime
duringthe brieffour monthssincethe revolutionunderthe leadershipof President, GeneralMohammedAyubKhan,as the instancesof the heightto which
the CivilServicescouldriseunderhonestandinspiringleadership.8

The CSPstrategyeventuallysucceededand it emergedunscathedfrom the


ordealof the Revolution.Mostof the 3,000 dismissals,compulsoryretirements
5. Khalid Bin Sayeed,Pakistan,the FormativePhase, (Karachi: PakistanPublishing House,
1960) pp. 402-3.
6. Dawn (Karachi) November 15, 1958. p. 1.
7. Ibid. November 17, 1958. p. 1.
8. Ibid. (Karachi) Mar 8, 1959, p. 1.

THE CIVIL SERVICEIN PAKISTAN

325

and reductionsin rank, took place at the lower ranks. At the end of this period
of separations from the service the first link in the tie between the military
and the civil service was forged and the linkage was continued and strengthened throughout the next five years. An important factor in the process
appeared in the military's new perception that they needed the help of the
CSP in order to run the country.

The Revolution'sPlansfor Reform


Upon assuming office, the new President "made a conscious and well publicized effort to modernize the social, economic and political life of the
country."9A few days after the Revolution PresidentAyub confronted his staff
in a meeting in Lahore with a list of items drawn from his pocket which were
later to become the major concerns of his administration:1) Land redistribution, 2) Educational improvements, 3) Constitutional reforms, 4) Legal
revisions, 5) Changes in the franchise and 6) Administrativereorganization.'0
Many of these reforms had been tried before but either without success or
serious effort. For example, land reform had succeeded in East Pakistan but
had made little headway in the West because of the entrenchedpower of the
large landowners. The revolutionaryregime began to work seriously at these
reforms. A limitation was placed on the size of landholding. The consolidation of small holdings was begun. A landmark educational report was made
and its implementationcontinues. Most legal and constitutionalreforms found
their way into the new constitution. Stability was to be insured by an increase
in the power of the President. Major development programs were to be
removed from the day to day bickering of the politicians. A modified federal
system was introduced to meet the needs of East Pakistan.
It was in the area of general administration, however, that the revolutionarygovernmentmade its largest strides.
In December, 1958, the government set up an Administrative Reorganization Committee with the following terms of reference:
To reviewthe organizational
structure,functionsand procedures
of the Ministries,Departments
and Subordinate
Officesof the Government
of Pakistan,and
to recommendimprovement
for efficiencyand expeditiousdisposalof business
in consonance
with requirements
of economy.
To carryout a surveyof the staffpositionof the CentralGovernment
witha view
to strengthening,retrenchingor re-allocatingthe staff wherevernecessary.
To recommend measures for the establishmentof close liaison between the

9. Wayne Ayres Wilcox, Pakistan, The Consolidation of a Nation, (New York: Columbia
University Press, 1963) p. 208.
10. This is not intended as an all-inclusive list. There were other reforms which came later,
particularly a recognition of the population problem and the problem of the status of women.

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in the field of
administrations,
particularly
Centraland ProvincialGovernment
development
work.
of the Committeeto be set
To examineand co-ordinatethe recommendations
up by the ProvincialGovernments
with a view to ensuringuniformapproach
to the problemof organization
of the Government
Offices.'1
The work of the AdministrativeReorganizationCommittee was carried on
during the entire period of the revolutionarygovernment through the activities
of its successor the Standing Organization Committee. The Administrative
ReorganizationCommittee highlighted four major reforms in its initial report:
A numberof structural
andprocedural
changesproposedby the Committee,
in the administrative
and acceptedby the Government,were unprecedented
historyof the country.New groundwas brokenby the Committeein respect
of the followingmatters:
A sweepingreformwas the introduction
of the SectionOfficersystemin the
Secretariat
replacingseverallayersof subordinatestaff (the LowerDivision
and the Under
the AssistantSecretary
Clerk,the Assistant,the Superintendent,
statusassistedby a Stenotypist
Secretary)by a singleofficerof UnderSecretary's
and an Assistant.
Radicalchangeswere made in the systemof financialcontrol,budgetingand
withwidefinancialpowers;
Ministrieswereentrusted
accounting.Administrative
prescribedfor incurringexpenditure
the dilatorysystemof multipleclearances
funds was abolished;and a systemof financialadvicewas
againstappropriate
of funds;
builtintothe Ministriesto ensureefficientmanagement
The scopeof the Financeand Commerce
Pool (constitutedbut not fully develIndia) was widenedthroughthe creationof an Economic
oped in pre-Partition
Pool intendedto includeofficersselectedto servethe ministryof Industriesas
well.
of officersof the ForeignServiceof Pakistan
The scopeof the responsibilities
that commercial
was substantially
enlargedas a resultof the recommendation
and publicrelationsfunctionsperformedabroadby representatives
of the Minisrespectively,
shouldbe takenoverby officers
triesof Commerce
andInformation
of the ForeignServiceandforma normalpartof theirfunctions.12
The Standing OrganizationCommittee continued to function in the implementation of the recommendationsof the AdministrativeReorganizationCommittee through 1964.
Further, a Provincial Reorganization Committee was set up which recommended a revision of the divisional and district administration. Its emphasis
was placed upon the establishmentof clear lines of responsibility,the coordination of policy making functions, the delegation of powers, the decentralization
of administrativeand financial control, and the simplificationof administrative
procedures. The struggle to implement these recommendationshas continued
through the entire revolutionaryperiod and survives today.
11. Pakistan1958-1959, (Karachi: Ferozsons,1959) p. 11.
12. Report of the AdministrativeReorganizationCommittee(Governmentof Pakistan,President's Secretariat,EstablishmentDivision, Efficiencyand 0 & M Wing) p. IV.

THE CIVIL SERVICEIN PAKISTAN

327

While tackling the problemof governmentalreorganization,the revolutionarygovernmentalso launcheda programof trainingfor its administrators,
laying particularemphasisupon the issues of economicdevelopmentand
administration.In February,1960, the AdministrativeTrainingCouncilwas
set up and formulateda trainingschemefor officersat all levelsof government.
These levels of trainingincluded: (1) The AdministrativeStaff College in
Lahorefor senior governmentofficers,joint secretaries,commissioners,and
officersof equivalentstatuswith morethan 14 yearsstatus. (2) The National
in Karachi,Lahore,and Daccafor mangeInstitutesof PublicAdministration,
ment and developmenttrainingfor middle level officersof the centraland
provincial governments,autonomousagencies, and private firms. (These
officesare held by deputysecretaries,deputycommissioners,and officersof
equivalentstatuswith from 7-14 yearsstatus.) (3) Academiesfor RuralDevelopmentat Peshawarand Comillato trainadministrative
supervisory
personnel for the now-defunctvillage aid department,and other nation-building
departments,as well as for the Civil Serviceof Pakistan,and ProvincialCivil
Service officersfor village developmentprograms. (4) The Civil Service
Academyalreadyestablishedwas continuedwith only minorchangesin curriculumas the entranceinstitutionfor the Civil Serviceof Pakistan. (5) A
Secretariat
TrainingInstituteto trainministerialpersonneland newlyrecruited
SectionOfficers.(Variousclericaland ministerialtrainingprogramsfell under
its jurisdiction.)
At the same time as governmentalreorganization
cameunderscrutiny,in
January,1959, the revolutionary
governmentestablishedfourteenCivilAwards
to recognizethe serviceto the state of non-officialsand governmentservants.
In March,1959, four new awardswere added and the existingawardswere
revised.RepublicDay, March23, 1959, was the occasionfor the announcement
of the firstPakistanCivil Awards. Recognitionof distinguishedpublicservice
was now to be rewardedand this programhas continuedthroughoutthe
revolutionaryperiod and still continuesin 1964. Administrativedevicespersistedthroughoutthe revolutionary
periodto be the mainmeasuresof reform.
One fact remainedunchangedthroughoutthis period of administrative
activity. The Civil Serviceof Pakistanremainedintactand no administrative
reorganization
daredattackits privilegedposition. Its officerswere appointed
as heads of the majortraininginstitutions,and even thoughits officerswere
participantsin the programs,theyretaineda privilegedand exdusiveposition.
Moreover,this exclusivenesswas retainedin the CivilServiceAcademydespite
many pressuresto open it to recruitsfrom all the CentralSuperiorServices.
Finally, no changes were made in its trainingprogramto reflect in any
significantway whatevermay have been the ideologyof the Revolution.The
real strugglefor power can best be seen in the conflictwithin the Pay and
Services Commission.

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The CSPand the Strugglefor Power


In the languageof Americanpublicadministration,
it is improperto refer
to a Pakistancivil service system. The membersof the public servicein
Pakistando not belong to a unifiedpublicservicewith uniformratesof pay,
promotionsand benefits. In fact, thereare variousservices,eachwith its own
rate of pay, its own benefitsand its own specialgovernmentpostsreservedfor
its members.These many and diverseservicesare best classifiedas follows:
(1) There are the centralsuperiorservices,whichincludesuchservicesas the
CSP, the Police Serviceand Audit and Accounts,(2) The ProvincialCivil
Servicewhichstaffs,largely,the lowerlevel generaladministrative
posts at the
provinciallevel, and (3) The technicalserviceswhichincludethe engineering
service,educationserviceand agricultureservice. Among these variouscategories of servicestherehas been verylittle exchangeof membershipand only
slight overlappingexists for a few selectedposts at differentlevels of the
hierarchy. Where there is overlapping,there are great inequalities. For
example,a manwho entersthe provincialcivil servicemayrequiretwentyyears
beforeassignmentto the samepost whicha manmayachievein only five years
in the CSP. In the examinationfor the CSP,the PCSman may have missed
by only one point in achievingthe gradeof his competitor.Worse,given the
quota system,he may have been by-passedand a man appointedwho was far
below him in the ranking. The embitteringof many men often resultedbecause the reservationof choice posts and the extremelylimited opportunity
for transferhaveintensifiedthe competitionamongthe services.This competition has all but deterioratedinto open hostilityand the majorrecipientof this
hostilityhasbeenthe CSP.
At the apex of the administrative
pyramidin Pakistanis the Civil Service
of Pakistan(CSP), the direct descendentof the old ICS establishedby the
Britishin the colonialperiod. Trainedin the Britishgeneralisttraditionthe
old pride and dignityof the ICScarriesover in the behavior,competenceand
exclusivenessof the membership.This verypride,traditionand exclusiveness,
however,are only the superficialreasonsof the hostilityto the CSP. Serving
at the very top of the administrative
pyramid,the CSPhas unsurpedthe r6le
of the colonialpower. The divisionsbetweensuperiorandsubordinate
services,
originallydesignedto keep the power in the handsof white sahibs,has been
maintained.The membershipof the CSP has continuedsmall and exclusive.
Manymoreposts have been reservedfor CSPofficersthan thereare members
of this serviceand the numberhas been increasingeachyear. (See Table I).
CSPofficers,therefore,enjoygreateropportunityfor a wide choiceof administrativeexperiencesand of posts thanany otherservice. As Table I also shows
a countryof 100 millionpeople.'3
by 1961, 379 officersadministered
13. Governmentof Pakistan,Reportof Pay & ServicesCommission,Ch. VI.

329

THE CIVIL SERVICE IN PAKISTAN

Table 1.

COMPARISON, POSTS RESERVEDAND CSP OFFICERS 1947-1961

Year

No. of Off.

No. of Posts

1947
1950
1954
1961

158
175
258
379

244
332
519
735

Difference

86
157
261
356

The Pakistani civil service maintains an incredible distinction between


superior and inferior services, central and provincial services, gazetted and
nongazetted officers,technical officersin technical services and technical officers
in non-technical services. As already noted, the rivalry is intense between
specialists and generalists, CSP and PCS. The organizational structureof the
serviceshas contributedmuch to the conflictwithin the bureaucracyof Pakistan.
But, all attempts to make major changes in the serviceshave been rejected.
The primary attempt to alter the hierarchywithin the Pakistani Civil Service
was carried on by the Pay and Services Commission. It labored for three years
and though its report was never released, many of its recommendationsbecame
known. The Commission proposed far-reachingchanges in the Civil Service
system. For example, it recommendedthe unification of the disparate services
into a seven tiered structure. A Pakistan Administrative Service was to be
created to replace the old CSP with admission available to it from the technical
services. Such proposals deeply threatened the future status of the CSP,
particularlythrough the attack on its privileged quota system. Its exclusiveness
also would have been decreased by admission of others to its ranks. Finally
its preferential salary and other benefit provisions would have been matched by
adjustmentsin the other services'benefits.
Naturally enough, the CSP fought back. Mr. G. Mueenudin, CSP, and
Mr. Ali Asghar, CSP, the two CSP members of the Commission, dissented
from the rest of the Commission. "We are of the opinion," they stated, "that
the system which has stood the test of time, not only during the British regime
but also during the tumultuousand importantyears since independenceshould
be permitted to continue with such changes as experience has shown necessary."'4 No changes were recommended by the dissenters. Their position
prevailed, however, and the report was shelved by the government.
It is in the fight over the Report of the Pay and Services Commissionthat
the struggle for power in the bureaucracycan be seen. Various organizations
of civil service employees petitioned the government for its release, to no avail.
Though the distinguished former Chief Justice of Pakistan was Chairmanof
the Commission and sponsor of the Report, the CSP was simply too powerful,
14. Loc. cit., p. 447.

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and all furtherattemptsto establisha new balancebetweenthe serviceswere


blocked.
followed
Duringthe yearsof the revolutionary
government,reorganization
reorganizationat the centraland provinciallevels of government.Attempts
were made to establishsome modusoperandibetweenthe generalistand the
specialist,whetherin Rawalpindi,Lahore,Dacca,the divisionsor the districts.
To date, no satisfactoryclarificationreallyexists,and administrative
problems
dealt
with
have been
as though they were unique to each individualor
organization. Administrativereorganizationnever was seen explicitly as a
vehicle for the shifting of power between the variousservices. Moreover,
when the reorganizationscould not be sustainedbecauseof politics in the
bureaucracy,they were overturned.This is one of the major reasons for
in Pakistan.
the frequencyof transfersand reorganizations
The bureaucracy
servednot only as the arenafor its own politicalbattles
but also became,in the absenceof any form of representative
institutions,the
forumin which nationalissueswere contested.Devoid of any otherpolitical
forum, the East-Westconflictand the conflictswithin West Pakistanfound
their expressionin the bureaucracy.The struggle betweenEast and West
Pakistanshoweditself in the assignmentof officers,in the allocationof funds,
and the establishment
of quotasat the CivilServiceAcademy,(to the detriment
of the meritprinciple). WithinWest Pakistan,PunjabiandPathansharedtop
assignmentsin the military;Punjabiand Sindhifought over the watersof the
Indusfor the scarcewaterresourcesvital to agriculturaldevelopment.
The struggle for power which had renderedthe parliamentarysystem
impotentduring the pre-revolutionary
period continuedunabatedunder the
revolutionarygovernment.Instead of taking place in the press and in the
halls of the National Assembly,it now showeditself in the talk and actions
of the bureaucracy.Participantsat the varioustraininginstitutions,given an
opportunityto freelyexpresstheirviews,spokeas partisansfor theirrespective
areasof the countryratherthanas servantsof a nationalstate. EastPakistanis
spoke for a greaterallocationof foreign exchangefrom the PlanningCommission for the importof goods necessaryto the developmentof their area.
Facultyfrom the Universityof Dacca were consultedon programsfor East
Pakistanand were offeredposts on the staff of the Commissionbecausethey
were from East Pakistan.The strugglefor powerin the bureaucracy
resulted
in the bifurcationof the PakistanIndustrialDevelopmentCorporationand
the railroads,even though,in the latter case, the East Pakistanrail lines had
been subsidizedby the more profitableWest PakistanRailways. In addition,
East Pakistangot its own AgriculturalDevelopmentCorporationand its own
Waterand PowerDevelopmentAuthority.Thesewerethe immediateadministrativeconsequencesof the politicalstrugglewhich has not reallybeen faced
by the Presidentof Pakistanbecauseof his abhorrence
of the term"politics."

THE CIVIL SERVICEIN PAKISTAN

331

Enmeshedin nationalpoliticsas advocatesof theirrespectiveregionsof the


country,the strugglefor powerduringthe revolutionary
governmentcontinued.
The civil servantswere unwilling neverthelessto admit or see the political
natureof the administrative
or personnelreforms. For this reason,aboveall
others,unlesstheyhadpoliticalsupport,thesereformseitherfailedto materialize or to becomeeffective. Thus administrativebifurcationalong East-West
lines was successful.Othereffortsat decentralization
or reorganization
within
West Pakistanfailed for lack of politicalsupporteitherinsideor outsidethe
bureaucracy.
The CivilServiceandthe BasicDemocracies
Pakistanis now knownthe world over for the establishment
of the system
of "BasicDemocracies"as a methodof stimulatingparticipationand leadership in local government.Patternedafterolderconceptions,suchas the institution of village self government(the panchayat),andincorporating
the features
of such self help schemesas the village AID, it establisheda systemof local
governmentbased upon people ratherthan area. Primaryconstituenciesof
approximately1,000 people, on the basis of adult suffrage,were established.
Eight or ten of these primaryconstituencieswere groupedtogetherto form
Union Councilsin the ruralsections,Town Committeesin the smallerurban
areas,and Union Committeesin the cities. The BasicDemocracyis a part of
a tieredstructurewhich exists in the sub-divisions,districtsand divisions. At
each higher level in the hierarchya portionof the memberscome from the
tier below. But in its operation,the bureaucracy
has played a fundamental
r6le for the Deputy Commissioner
is the "controllingauthority"for muchof
its activity.
Unlike the old panchayatswhichhad few powersand little money,government has allocatedspecificpowersand some funds for the use of the "Basic
Democracies."They have been permittedto operatein those areasthat are
subjectto the supervisionof the DeputyCommissioner.Sincethe whole tone
of the public policy was one of self help and the encouragementof local
initiative, Deputy Commissionerswere instructedto interprettheir powers
very generouslyand even to permitmistakesby the councilsas part of their
learning process.'5 At the same time, governmentbegan a campaignof
exhortationto remindthe civil servantsthat they were trulythe servantsof
the peopleandmustthereforestopactingas if theywererulers. The arrogance
of the bureaucracy
was sharplyattackedin orderto encouragethe independence
and freedomof the BasicDemocracies.
Duringthe few yearsthat the BasicDemocraciessystemhas beenin opera15. Abdul Qayyum,CSP. "The Role of the Deputy Commissionerin Basic Democracies"in
Perspectivesin Public Administration.Civil ServiceAcademy. p. 139.

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tion therehas beena certainlooseningof the stringsof government.Although


the systembeganwith a largenumberof appointiveofficers,presentdirectives
call for the replacementof all appointedmembers(who resign), by elective
members. The use of the Basic Democraciesas an electoralcollege for the
election of the Presidentof Pakistanhas greatlystrengthenedtheir political
influenceand prestige. In EastPakistanparticularly,
the governmenthas made
good use of these local governmentalinstitutionsto undertakesmall village
developmentprojectswith the use of Americancounterpartfunds. Finally,
zealous governmentofficerswho believe in this institutionof local self
government,have undertakento providemore adequateadministrativeand
technicalsupportfrom the provincialgovernment.'6All of these effortshave
servedto makemore effectivean institutionwhichinitiallyhad been regarded
as unpromising
or evenas a politicalsham.
Recentfield investigationshave indicatedto this authorthat a new vitality
exists amongthe membersof theseinstitutions.Requests,thoughtfulquestions
and criticismsgreetedgovernmentofficersfrom the Staff College when field
trips were made to a varietyof Union Councils,Town Committeesor Union
Committees.Long since true in East Pakistan,becauseof a greaterdegreeof
politicalmaturity,it has also developedin West Pakistan.Unquestionably,
the
systemof BasicDemocracieshas encouragedthe vitalityandraisedthe level of
expectationsof the villagersin both East and West Pakistan. Moreover,on
these field trips,no evidencewas apparentthat the civil servicehad done anything to stifle this initiativeand criticism.In some instances,the officerson
tourfromthe StaffCollege,someof whomwereformerDeputyCommissioners,
even encouragedthis local initiative.
Littlecreditcan be given to the civil servicefor the creationof the systemof
BasicDemocracieseven thoughthe administrative
taskof settingup the system
fell to them. The CSP and PCS in their capacitiesas DeputyCommissioners
workedwith dispatchand efficiencydespitethe fact that manyof themwere
(and may still be) doubtful about the system'sefficacy. Such evidenceis
availableto demonstratethat the bureaucracy
has reallyworkedhardto make
the systemworkin manypartsof the country.Perhapsthe motivationhas been
that this programhas AyubKhan'sfull support,but more importantlyit has
enabledintentionallyor otherwisethe civil serviceto keepcontrolof the Union
Councilsin their own hands. In Baluchistan,for example,the CSPhas been
able to use the BasicDemocracySystemto replacethe Sardarisystemwith the
as the new Sardar.In the futuretheymaybe able to use
DeputyCommissioner
the Union Councilas an effectiveweaponagainstthe Zamindarsin the Sindif
their ideologywill permit. In this mannerhas the civil serviceoperatedunder
the BasicDemocracySystem.
16. See Richard 0. Niehoff and George M. Platt, Local Government in East Pakistan. (mimeo.)
passim.

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333

The Civil Serviceand EconomicReform


Within the limitsof its ideology,the revolutionary
leadershipin the person
of the Presidentand the men aroundhim shoulderedmuchof the responsibility
for economicdevelopment.It saw its primerole as one of bringingprevious
dreamsinto reality. Its economicmeasurespromotedland reform,fiscaland
tax reforms,and the improvementof planningand implementationof programs,most of whichhad beenpreviouslyattemptedthoughunsuccessfully.
The Revolutionturned to a highly respectedformer civil servant,Mr.
MohammedShoaib,who had been appointedFinanceMinisterby General
IskandirMirzaand continuedunderGeneralAyubKhan,as the chief architect
of its economicprogram.Formerlya controllerof militaryfinanceand for six
yearsan officerof the World Bankin Washington,he was orthodoxandpragmaticin his economicviews. Soon afterthe Revolution,Shoaibwas quotedas
sayingthat GeneralAyub"will follow an orthodoxeconomicpolicyand avoid
living beyondour means."'17In the preface to the SecondFive Year Plan,
writtenin Juneof 1960, Mr. G. Ahmed,then Chairmanof the PlanningCommission,has confirmedthe practicalexpressionof this philosophy. "No doctrinaireassumptionsunderliethe Plan and neitheran exclusivelycapitalistnor
an exclusivelysocialisteconomyis postulated. The approachthroughoutis
pragmatic."'8

This economicphilosophyof a regulatedprivateenterprisehas resultedin


a wide varietyof economicactivity.First,the initiativeof wealthyentrepreneurs
was releasedand huge undertakingswere begun. Secondand in contrast,the
governmentencouragedindustrialactivitywith its own incentives.The PakistanIndustrialDevelopmentCorporation
activelycontinued,duringthisperiod,
to encouragethe developmentof privateindustry.Throughthe effortsof the
PIDC, woolen mills, sugarmills, cementfactories,shipyardsand manyother
typesof industrialactivitywerecompletedor expanded.Someof themeventually were turnedoverto privateenterprise,as cooperationbetweengovernment
and the privatesectorappearedto providethe basisfor the Revolution'seconomic policy.

Besidesfurtheringsmall industry,the revolutionary


regimehas undertaken
to build the infrastructure
necessaryfor economicdevelopment.Government
corporationshave been establishedto constructdams for the productionof
electricpower;roadshavebeenbuiltto openup areasonlyrecentlyinaccessible;
banks and credit facilities have been expanded. The governmenthas been
ideologicallypreparedto undertakeany governmentinvestment,ownershipor
operationwhichwas consideredessentialto economicdevelopmentand which
could not be undertakenby the privatesector.
17. Dawn (Karachi) November 27, 1958.
18. Government of Pakistan, The Second Five Year Plan. p. xiii.

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There were no majorideologicaldifferencesbetweenthe pre-revolutionary


and the revolutionary
governmentsover the developmentschemes.The differencesthat emergedwere centeredupon the realizationthat the Revolutionwas
morefirmlyin controlof the politicalprocessthan its predecessorsand hence
officerswerethen
less subjectto obstructiveeconomicpressures.Administrative
in a strongerpositionto carryout their instructionswithoutpoliticalinterference. Economicplanninghad at leastbecomepossiblewithoutthe interruptions
of the politicalelementsin the society. As has beenpointedout previously,the
and
arenaof politicalstrugglenow existedexclusivelywithinthe bureaucracy
this helps to simplifythe decisionprocess.
The revolutionaryregimehas been able to carryout muchof its program
in East
unlikepredecessorgovernments.Landreform,previouslyaccomplished
in West Pakistan.The importof luxurygoods
Pakistan,has beenaccomplished
has been stoppedand scarceforeign exchangehas been conservedfor more
importantpurposes. Long overduetaxes were collected. Economicplanning
has begun in earnest. Most important,plans that had been madepreviously,
were at least implemented.The revolutionaryleadershiprealizedthat implementationrequiredas a first step an implementationwing to the Planning
Commission.The developmentof planningcells in the operatingdepartments
has furtherstrengthenedthe processesof implementation.
Today, there can be no questionthat the Revolutionhas asserteda tighter
controland more efficientoperationof governmentalactivitiesthan any of its
predecessors.The moreefficientandeffectiveoperationof governmentresulted
fromthis control. In theseaspectsof the Revolution'sactivitiesthe civil service
has been crucial. The skills and capacitiesof the CSPwere indispensableto
the fulfillmentof the administration's
initiatives.
SomeConcludingObservations
The basicthemeof this paperis that therehas beenno real revolutionin
Pakistan. There was a changing of the guard, perhaps,but the principal
operatorsremainedthe same. The armyand the civil servicehad beenthe real
powerand remainedso. In the change-overof 1958 they simplyemergedinto
the open to assumethe r8lesthattheyhad beenplayingfrombehindthe scenes.
This is not to say that manyof the principalsdo not feel that theyreallyhave
madea revolution.But the historiansof Pakistanin futureyearswill probably
not view the turn of eventsin 1958 as the majorbreakthrough
from a traditionalto a modernway of life.
The achievementsof the "revolutionary"
governmentlie largely in its
administrativeinnovations.Ideologically,its philosophyand plans remained
the sameas those of its predecessorregimes,but it soughtfreshtechniquesand
initiativesthroughthe use of administrativedeviceswithoutrecognizingthat

THE CIVIL SERVICEIN PAKISTAN

335

problemsof social, economicand politicalunderdevelopment


are only solved
by majorchangesin the fabricof a society.No administrative
systemor organizational change can do better than amelioratean unfortunatesocial system
withoutattackingthe rootcauses. To builda new administrative
systemon top
of decayingsocial institutionsis to substituteform for substanceand would
hardlyhelp to promotethe basicpoliticalchangesthatareso imperative.
The "revolution"of 1958, at least for the timebeing,postponedanythreat
of the disintegrationof the nation-stateof Pakistan.The militaryand the civil
servicewere permittedto work towardthe goal of nationalunificationand
identification.Those disagreements
whichhad been tearingthe countryapart
were divertedfrom the usual political channelsof expressionand deflected
into the bureaucracy,
and the bureaucracy
hencebecamethe arenafor covert
formsof politicalstruggle. Fortunately,this arenawas highlyresilientand the
fabric of the nation-statewas never imperilled. There is no doubt that this
insertionof conflictinto the bureaucracy
createdmoraleproblemsamong a
group of men alreadycaughtin their own internaldisputes. Reformof the
has been inadequateto cope with these problems.Unfortunately,
bureaucracy
the bittertensionsremain.Economicdevelopmentunderthistypeof leadership
is extremelydifficultin such situationsof strain. Nor have the prospectsof
leadershipbeen improvedeven though some secretaryships
once reservedfor
CSPalonehave been openedup to technicalmen.'9Essentiallythe recruitment
of top personnelis still limitedby the privilegedproceduresremainingfrom
the past.
The best indicationas to whetheror not therewill be a majorchangein
Pakistanis to be found in the massiveexpansionof the CSP. This highly
qualifiedgeneralistserviceis the only servicewhichcan undertakethe leadership requiredin a massiveeconomicdevelopmentprogram.To date,the opposition to such expansionhas been so great that it has even questionedthe
intellectualcapacityof the young men of Pakistan. Innumerablestatements
have been made by CSP men that Pakistandoes not producemore than 25
qualifiedmen a yearfor admissioninto the CSP. Until thereis a majorbreakthroughin the recruitment,
trainingand administrative
utilizationof the CSP,
therewill be no majorchangein the economicor socialconditionsof Pakistan.
In summary,the functioningof the PakistanCivilServicein the revolutionary governmentprovidesan interestingcase studyof the role of a traditionin a new country.In its strugglesto maintainits privileges
boundbureaucracy
and its relationshipwith the military,it has seriouslythreatenedto impairthe
momentumof the Revolution.Initiallyfrightenedand perhapsstill somewhat
concernedaboutthe military'spower,the CSPhas been able to surviveduring
the years of recentturmoilby adjustingitself to the marginaldemandsand
19. One result which may be attributedindirectlyto the Pay and ServicesCommissionReport.

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administrative
innovationsof the Revolution.Its successhas largelybeen determinedby the essentiallynon-revolutionary
natureof Ayub Khan'sseizure
of power. Had AyubKhan actedwith the bold and radicaldetermination
that
Americanshave now come to associatewith revolutions,the CSPcouldnever
have survived. As an entrenchedbureaucracy
with an orderlybut traditionboundmode of work,it would have been the firsttargetof a genuinerevolutionaryimpulse. That it did surviveand succesfullyretainits privilegedstatus
is a reflectionupon Ayub Khan's ideology of power and also upon his acceptanceof the CSPas a necessary-thoughinhibiting-instrumentof government.