Sindh Assembly approves 0.5pc job quota for transgender persons

We will ensure this quota to be implemented not only in govt sector but also in private sector, says Chawla


KARACHI    -    In a ‘historic’ move, the Sindh Assembly on Monday unanimously passed ‘The Sindh Civil Servants (Amendment) Bill, 2021’ to fix 0.5 percent quota for transgender at public sector institutions in the province.

Presenting the bill, Parliamentary Affairs Minister Mukesh Kumar Chawla said that after enactment of the law, Sindh would be first province to give jobs to transgender. “At this stage this is just a beginning as only 0.5 percent quota has been fixed for transgender. We will ensure this quota to be implemented not only in the government sector but also in the private sector,” he added.

“The transgender are marginalised and vulnerable segment of our society. The history of transgender community in Pakistan is fraught with violence, socio-political exclusion, economic inequality/ insecurity and emotional insensitivity. In this respect, it is to empower and include such a vulnerable and weak community in the mainstream of the society and for this purpose, it has been decided by the Government of Sindh to reserve 0.5 percent quota for transgender, hence it is expedient to amend the Sindh Civil Servants Act, 1973,” the bill’s statement and objects read. Chawla said that the provincial government had already fixed five percent quota each for minorities and persons with disabilities.

‘PTI, KE responsible for electricity outage in Karachi’

Sepatately, Sindh Energy Minister Imtiaz Ahmed Shaikh said that the province particularly Karachi was facing severe electricity crises owing to the ‘incompetence’ of the previous federal government as well as flaws in the K-Electric’s (KE) system.

Responding to a call attention notice moved by Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf’s (PTI) Adeeba Hassan, the energy minister termed the previous government responsible for the power crisis and said that the PTI-led government in the Centre had refused to entertain cheap energy projects proposed by the Sindh government.

“This (energy crisis) is a national issue created by the previous federal government as the situation became bad to worse due to its ill policies and incompetence,” Shaikh added.

He said that Sindh Chief Minister (CM) Syed Murad Ali Shah had proposed the then federal government to entertain cheap energy projects of Sindh government including Thar Coal, solar and wind power projects, adding that the PTI did not pay heed to it. The energy minister reiterated that only Sindh had solution to the country’s energy crises, adding that the incumbent federal government was cooperating with the provincial government.

“Hopefully, we will be able to cope with the issue (energy crisis once we get out of the failures of the previous government),” he added. The energy minister also came down heavily on the K-Electric, the sole electricity provider in the city, for several flaws in its system. He also demanded of the federal government to conduct forensic audit of the power utility.

Referring to privatisation of the then Karachi Electric Supply Corporation, Shaikh said that it should be made public so as to what were responsibilities of the KE as per the agreement. He said that after the surge in electricity load-shedding in the city, they had a meeting with the KE officials.

“There is 800 megawatt shortfall in Karachi as the KE is getting 2,700 megawatt from the national grid against its demand of 3,500 megawatt,” the energy minister added.

“PTI boycott against load-shedding’

 In her call attention notice, Adeeba Hassan of PTI said that Karachi had been facing worst power breakdown as the electricity was being provided for only 10 hours a day. She said that load-shedding had made the life of people of Karachi miserable and the business community had also been affected. “Sindh government should wake up and look into the matter,” she said.

“Karachi is facing the worst load-shedding of electricity. The entire city is facing up to 12-hour power cut down. As a protest, we are boycotting the Assembly sitting,” PTI’s Parliamentary Leader Khurram Sherzaman said before walking out along with the other party lawmakers. Meanwhile, the House also passed The Ibn-e-Sina University Mirpurkhas Bill, 2021. While two other government bills— The Sindh Physiotherapy Council Bill, 2022 and The Partnership (Sindh Amendment) Bill, 2022—were introduced and sent to standing committees for further deliberations.

‘Sindh controlled lumpy skin’

Separately, Livestock and Fisheries Minister Abdul Bari Pitafi said that Sindh government had successfully managed to control lumpy skin disease. He said that the department had imported four million vaccines and 2.8 million animals were immunised so far in the province. The livestock and fisheries minister said that 37 cattle markets had been set up in the province for Eid-ul-Azha, adding that their teams were present there 24 hours to check the animals. “As of now, only three animals are affected of lumpy skin in Sindh,” he added.

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