Prime Minister Imran Khan has taken notice of federal government officials, especially those of the Pakistan Administrative Service (PAS) and the Police Service of Pakistan (PSP), for not performing their administrative duties impartially, for not observing the rule of law, and for not staying away from political activities while serving in the provinces.
The Cabinet Secretariat and the Establishment Division have asked all the four provincial governments as well as the Gilgit-Baltistan and Azad Kashmir governments to communicate the Prime Minister Khan’s concerns to the federal government officials serving in their respective provinces, and asked them to keep strictly administrative neutrality, rule of law, and observe the provision of Rules 24 and 29 of the Government Servants (Conduct) Rules 1964.
The official letter further says that the involvement of federal government officers, especially of the PAS and the PSP, in political affairs and their lack of neutrality are the main hurdles in the smooth running of the administrative affairs of the provinces.
According to Rule 24 of Government Servants (Conduct) Rules 1964, “Taking part in politics and elections”:
“(1) No government servant shall take part in, subscribe in aid of, or assist in any way, any political movement in Pakistan or relating to the affairs of Pakistan.
“(2) No government servant shall permit any person dependent on him for maintenance or under his care or control, to take part in or in any way assist, any movement or activity which is, or tends directly or indirectly to be, subversive of government as by law established in Pakistan.
“(3) No government servant shall canvass or otherwise interfere or use his influence in connection with or take part in any election to a legislative body, whether in Pakistan or elsewhere.
“Provided that a government servant, who is qualified to vote at such election may exercise his right to vote, but if he does so, he shall give no indication of the manner in which he proposes to vote or has voted.
“(4) No government servant shall allow any member of his family dependent on him to indulge in any political activity, including forming a political association and being its member, or to act in a manner in which he himself is not permitted by sub-rule (3) to act.
“(5) A government servant who issues an address to electors or in any other manner publicly announces himself or allows himself to be publicly announced as a candidate or prospective candidate for election to a legislative body shall be deemed for the purpose of sub-rule (3) to take part in an election to such body.
“(6) The provisions of sub-rules (3) and (5) shall, so far as may be, apply to elections to local authorities or bodies, save in respect of government servants required or permitted by or under any law, or order of the government, for the time being in force, to be candidates at such elections.
“(7) If any question arises whether any movement or activity falls with the scope of this rule, the decision of the government thereon shall be final.
(8) Use of political or other influence – no government servant shall bring or attempt to bring political or other outside influence, directly or indirectly, to bear on the government or any government servant in support of any claim arising in connection with his employment as such.”
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