PESHAWAR: The provincial establishment department has turned down the proposal of higher education department to promote 480 teachers of government colleges without conducting mandatory training, according to officials.
They said that higher education department had moved a summary to Chief Minister Mahmood Khan to exempt the teachers, whose promotion was due but they couldn’t conduct mandatory training as funds were not released to KP Higher Education and Academy of Research and Training.
Under the service rules, the teachers of the colleges have to undergo mandatory training before getting promotion to next grade.
Officials said that the summary of higher education department was returned by the establishment department before it could reach the Chief Minister House. They said that promotion of 14 teachers to BPS-20; 157 teachers to BPS-19; and 310 teachers to BPS-18 had been pending for the last one year.
Asked why training was not arranged for the college teachers, the director of Higher Education and Academy of Research and Training, Munawar Alam, said that previously his institution successfully imparted training to the teachers.
He said that the last training was imparted to teachers in March 2018. “We had scheduled more trainings in 2018 but Election Commission of Pakistan imposed ban on release of development funds in April last,” he added.
Mr Alam said that owing to ban on release of funds, the trainings scheduled by the academy couldn’t be materialised. By the end of May 2018, the tenure of the previous PTI government ended and caretaker provincial government had no power to release the development funds, he added.
The newly formed PTI government presented its budget for 2018-19 in October instead of July due to general elections.
“Now the finance department has released Rs14 million, which is 25 per cent of the total budget allocated for the teachers’ training,” said Mr Alam. He said that HEART would train 560 teachers in 2019. He added that the training would began in March.
Abdul Hameed Afridi, the president of KP Professors and Lecturers Association, expressed concerns over a year long delay in the promotion of 480 teachers.
“We (teachers) are ready for getting mandatory training anytime. It is not our fault that HEART couldn’t arrange training due to lack of funds,” Mr Afridi said.
He said that teachers had decided to meet the chief minister to urge him to issue directives regarding their exemption from the mandatory training.
Regarding the establishment department’s reservation and turning down the summary for promotion, a senior official said that there was no provision in the service rules to exempt teachers from mandatory training.
He said that it would become precedence for the employees of other government departments if teachers were exempted from the mandatory training. “Then thousands of employees will approach establishment department to exempt them from the mandatory training,” he added.
A senior official of higher education department said that the department’s stance on the issue was logical as both the teachers and HEART had no fault in the delaying the training. He said that the department would refine the summary regarding exemption of teachers from the training and forward it to the chief minister for approval.
Published in Dawn, January 9th, 2019