ISLAMABAD   -   President Dr Arif Alvi on Tuesday called for revisiting the laws governing the institution of Wafaqi Mohtasib to provide speedy and free-of-cost justice to the people against the maladministration of government organisations. 

The President gave these remarks at a briefing on the role of Wafaqi Mohtasib, given by Federal Ombudsman Syed Tahir Shahbaz here at the Federal Ombudsman Secretariat.

The meeting was attended by Acting Secretary Wafaqi Mohtasib Aftab Akbar Durrani, Consultant (Legal Affairs) President’s Secretariat Justice Sayed Zahid Hussain and senior advisors of Wafaqi Mohtasib. 

In order to help and facilitate the overseas Pakistanis, the President asked the Federal Ombudsman to create a special cell to redress the grievances and rectify injustices done to expatriates through the maladministration of government agencies. 

The President emphasised the need for further enhancing the outreach of Wafaqi Mohtasib to remote areas of the country to provide speedy and free of cost justice to the aggrieved persons, at their doorsteps, against administrative injustices. 

He underlined the need to use the Alternative Dispute Resolution system for the provision of speedy, less expensive and hassle-free justice to the people which can boost the confidence and trust of people upon the judicial system. 

He advised the Wafaqi Mohtasib to create awareness among the people about the role of the institution in dispensing speedy and free of cost administrative justice. 

The President underscored the need to digitally integrate the Wafaqi Mohtasib Secretariat with the President’s Secretariat which would greatly help in the quick disposal of representations and public’s complaints as well as saving time and public money. 

The President appreciated the performance and contributions of the Ombudsman in redressing record number of complaints and dispensing justice to the aggrieved persons against administrative injustices. 

Federal Ombudsman Syed Tahir Shahbaz briefed the President about the achievements of his organisation during his tenure.

He apprised the meeting that Wafaqi Mohtasib had witnessed a considerable increase in the number of complaints due to its role in provision of justice and a public awareness campaign through media and awareness seminars.

He said that Wafaqi Mohtasib had received 133,251 complaints during 2020 as compared to 73,059 during 2019, which is 82% higher than the last year. 

He highlighted that the implementation rate of Federal Ombudsman’s decisions was 99.6% during the year 2020. 

Regarding the disposal of complaints, the Mohtasib said that his organisation had disposed of 130,112 complaints during 2020 as against 74,892 in 2019, which is an increase of 74% as compared to last year.

In order to help address the complaints belonging to remote areas, he said that new regional offices had been established at Abbottabad and Kharan to provide free of cost justice to the people. 

He further stated that the number of online complaints had increased by 7 times and reached 77,930 in the year 2020 from 11,289 in the year 2019. 

He said that regional offices at Quetta and Bahawalpur had registered 643.1% and 302.9% increase in receipt of complaints during 2020 as compared to the year 2019.