President Dr. Arif Alvi has directed the Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) to reconsider the appointment of a candidate from Ex-FATA who had been denied employment, despite securing first position in the written exam, on the ground that his degree was issued to him late by his university due to the COVID-19 pandemic, and he was not in possession of the degree on the cut-off date.
He observed that FBR had ignored the university’s categorical statement on his degree stating that the complainant was eligible for admission in any university or job from June/July 2021 as his degree was issued late in June 2022 due to COVID-19 which was beyond human control, and it was not the fault of the student.
The President gave this decision in a case where Hamza Wazir (the complainant) had applied for the post of Assistant (BS-15) in FBR in October 2021, secured first position in the written test, and subsequently, was also called for an interview.
FBR denied him the job opportunity by claiming that since the degree was issued to the complainant on 02-06-2022 after a lapse of more than 08 months after the date of advertisement published on 19-09-2021, therefore, he did not meet the relevant criteria for the post.
Feeling aggrieved, the complainant approached the Wafaqi Mohtasib (WM) who gave the order that the selection and appointment of a person against an advertised post was the sole prerogative of the Agency, and the case was referred to Chairman FBR to reconsider it.
The complainant, then, filed a review petition with WM which was rejected on the ground that on the cut-off date, the complainant had no proof of being a Bachelor’s Degree holder, therefore, he was not eligible for the said post, and that no maladministration was established on the part of FBR. Subsequently, Hamza Wazir filed a representation to the President.
The President accepted his representation, and held that FBR had not considered the case of the complainant objectively by not providing him the opportunity to explain the matter and deprived him of his due right; that special relaxation, incentives, and enticements were given at large due to epidemic of COVID-19, which was beyond human control.
He further stated that nowadays, there was tough competition for each and every post and a large number of candidates were coming forward, and the obligation to act fairly on the part of administrative authorities had evolved to ensure the due process of law, prevent the failure of justice and avoid any unfair treatment.
The President noted that earlier on 24-05-2021, the complainant had filed a complaint before WM with the plea that he got admission in the Associate Degree Program at Islamabad Postgraduate College, affiliated with the Quaid-e-Azam University, in 2019 and it had not declared the result of 1st and 2nd semester despite a lapse of two years, which would delay the completion of his degree and also affect his career prospects.
The case had been disposed of on the assurance of the University’s representative before the President’s Secretariat that the student’s bachelor’s degree might be considered from June/July 2021. He added that the act of FBR ran counter to this decision of the President, therefore, maladministration had been established on the part of FBR.
The President, therefore, set aside the orders of the Mohtasib and directed FBR to reconsider the appointment of the complainant against the post of the Assistant against the quota of Ex-FATA.