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Sindh Assembly demands consensus on talks with TTP

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Sindh Assembly demands consensus on talks with TTP

KARACHI: The Sindh Assembly Friday adopted a resolution through a majority vote, calling upon the government to take on board all stakeholders and political parties through parliament for building a national-level consensus on the issue of talks with Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP).

The resolution in the house was moved by Parliamentary Secretary for Health Muhammad Qasim Soomro and co-signed by other lawmakers on the treasury benches.

The resolution states: “This house objects to the unilateral negotiations with banned TTP that are being carried out in the most secretive manner by the federal government, which indicates the complete bypass of the parliament as the supreme institution in the country to decide upon such matters of national security.

“TTP has claimed thousands of innocent lives in the country over the last two decades including innocent civilians, brave soldiers of the armed forces, police officers, religious scholars, non-political prominent people, and lest we forget, the APS massacre.

“To initiate talks with such a ruthless organisation indicates federal government’s unwillingness to crush them by means of force. “Prime Minister cannot strike a deal with the TTP on its own as this is a matter of our national interest and must be discussed in the parliament. The house demands the federal government to take onboard all the relevant stakeholders, political parties, and institutions through the parliament and build a consensus over such a consequential move.”

The parliamentary secretary said the elected assemblies should first hold a debate on the issue of talks with a banned outfit as earlier the same phenomenon had caused much harm to the country. Earlier, the Sindh government came under severe criticism for compromising the principle of merit in the recent drive to recruit teachers for the government-run schools in the province.

Speaking on his calling attention notice on the issue, opposition legislator of Grand Democratic Alliance Arif Mustafa Khan Jatoi lamented the situation that a very large number of candidates had failed to qualify the recruitment test, conducted by the IBA Sukkur for hiring teachers as per the original qualification criteria.

The opposition legislator recalled that his father had also received education from a government school and later on, he had excelled in life and became prime minister of the country.

He raised a question that how come a candidate, who passed the recruitment test by merely securing 40 per cent marks, would be able to impart education to children. He said that merely 1,300 candidates, out of total 32,000 applicants, were able to clear the recruitment test.

Sindh Education and Culture Minister Sardar Ali Shah clarified that none of the candidates had been able to pass the recruitment test because of influence. He claimed that the education secretary’s own child had failed to pass the test. He said the system of government jobs in the province had maximum number of vacancies related to the teaching profession. He said that 6,000 such teaching posts got vacant every year while the recruitment test to fill the same vacancies had been earlier held in 2018.

He said the teachers’ recruitment drive was necessary for continuity of the school education system in the province. He said special concession had been offered to the candidates who had applied against seats reserved for woman candidates and applicants belonging to minorities. The minister said the government girls’ schools in rural areas had not been functioning properly.

He said the minimum marks of the test had been lowered much in the case of backward areas of the province where there was no government-run school within the radius of 40 kilometres. He said that every candidate was required to secure minimum 45 per cent marks to clear recruitment test in every subject. He said that a candidate would be chosen to teach a subject, in which he had obtained maximum marks in the recruitment test.

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