ISLAMABAD: The Supreme Court declared that a government job is not hereditary; therefore, post of a government employee after his death could not be given to his heirs. A three-judge bench, headed by Chief Justice Gulzar Ahmed, on Tuesday, heard the federal government appeal against the Peshawar High Court (PHC)'s verdict.
The bench set aside the PHC's judgment to provide father's post to the son. The High Court had directed the education department to appoint Siraj Muhammad (respondent) in pursuance of "Prime Minister's Assistance Package for Families of Government Employees who die in service" dated 13.06.2006 to be effective from 01.07.2005.
Siraj Muhammad informed that his father, while working as teacher in the Federal Directorate of Education, Peshawar, died in 2000. The respondent said that after his father's death he approached the federal education department for appointment on the quota of government employees, as his father had died during service, on the basis of Office Memorandum dated 09.09.2016, but the same was never responded.
Siraj stated that therefore, he filed a writ petition before the PHC, Peshawar, which has been allowed vide impugned judgment and it has been held that a statute or rule giving right to the citizens always operates retrospectively.
The federal government on 13.06.2006 issued "Assistance Package for Families of Government Employees who die in service", according to which son/ daughter/ widow/ widower/ family member, as the case may be, of the deceased government servant was made eligible for employment for posts in BS-01 to BS-15 on two years contract without any advertisement.
This package was amended time and again and finally an amendment was made vide Office Memorandum dated 09.09.2016, whereby, the two-year contract was enhanced to five years and the same was also made extendable till the age of superannuation or regularisation.
Additional Attorney General Sohail Mehmood submitted that the respondent's father died in 2000 when there was no policy in vogue for employment of deceased's family member; therefore, the respondent could not have been given retrospective benefit of the policy, which was issued later on with prospective effect. He contended that the High Court has wrongly interpreted that a statute or rule giving right to the citizens always operates retrospectively and the impugned judgment is not sustainable in the eyes of law may be set aside.
Siraj told that he possessed all the requirements/ qualification but despite that he was not appointed on the basis of the Office Memorandum, which amounts to depriving him from his legal right.
The chief justice after hearing the arguments set aside the PHC judgment. He said the rules to provide government job to the family members of deceased government employees are a bit strange, adding the jobs are not heredity as this would end merit in government organisations.
He said only those persons are eligible for quota in government job on the basis of Prime Minister's Assistance Package whose family members have died during the service after 2005. Justice Mazhar Alam Khan Miankhel remarked that initially this law was made for the children of police and "shuhada".
Siraj Muhammad said the sacrifices of all the government servants are equal. The court said it could not happen that after the death of father his son be given his post. The chief justice said basically the law was made for low-income employees, but now officers' children are inducted in the government departments on this quota.