Court directed to release salaries to daily wage employees of irrigation dept

Rawalpindi - The Lahore High Court (LHC) Thursday ordered the high-ups of Punjab Irrigation and Power to release four months salaries to 15 daily wage employees as they had been seeking regularization of their services in the court.

LHC Rawalpindi Bench Justice Muhammad Ameer Bhatti directed officials of the irrigation department to pay salaries to Muhammad Asghar and other petitioners for last four months, as they filed a contempt of court plea against the irrigation department for not complying with the high court orders regarding their regularization.

The court also asked the concerned authorities to file their written response to the contempt of court plea till January 19.

Muhammad Asghar, who filed his petition through Tanveer Iqbal Advocate, while making Punjab Chief Secretary Capt (Retd) Zahid Syed, Secretary Irrigation and Power Muhammad Aslam, Chief Enginner Chaudhry Mushtaq and divisional engineers of the department in Rawalpindi division as respondents. They prayed to the court to direct the authorities to implement the court’s earlier orders for their regularization.

The petitioners said that in February 2016, the LHC accepted three identical petitions filed by contract employees of the irrigation department.

The court clearly directed the department to regularize the petitioners who had been working on daily wages against permanent posts for last 10 years.

The department instead of implementing the orders challenged the decision in Supreme Court.

The Supreme Court of Pakistan however sent back the Punjab government’s petition to LHC. The government was asked to file intra-court appeal in the LHC.

The government’s appeal was still pending in the high court.

A division bench of the LHC had so far not suspended the orders of the single bench for regularization of the petitioners working at different small dams in Rawalpindi division.

The petitioners had maintained in the court that the irrigation department instead of regularizing them had stopped paying them monthly salaries. They said that the department had paid them no salaries since September 2016.

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