Banking hours for employees

The letter was published in Daily Dawn on 31 August 2013

This is apropos Hasan Shariq’s letter ‘Banking employees’ woes’ (Aug 27). The writer has well described the woes of the bankers.

I second his argument that the State Bank of Pakistan is extremely strict about bankers arriving at their workplace before 9 o’clock.

The job nature of bankers does not allow them to leave their work place during office hours in spite of the fact that the banks usually require their staff to be in office after office hours.

One may usually find the bank staff in their respective branches till 8pm. Decisions to open branches on Sundays usually happens for the collection of income tax and other government duties.

As a regulator senior SBP officials should make surprise visits to banks after office hours and if any staff is found in any bank’s premises, the bank should be fined.



Democracy in parties

The letter was published in Daily Dawn on 11 January 2008

THIS is apropos of Shahid Javed Burki’s article, ‘The obligation of political parties’ (Jan 8).

Mr Burki said he had given a presentation to the President-General (at that time) Pervez Musharraf about the implementation of a code of conduct drafted by himself and Mohammad Waseem.

I do not agree with his claim that the codes should be implemented by a person who has derailed the democratic process in Pakistan forcefully.

Further, if you state that democracy in political parties should come first, then I should add that there has always been democracy in the political parties of Pakistan as the Central Executive Committee of the Pakistan People’s Party has reposed their full confidence in its new chairman, Bilawal Bhutto Zardari.

Please don’t always blame the political structure of Pakistan.

Let democracy reign in the country, and see that the other two forces – capital accumulation and human development for economic progress and modernisation – will also develop.


Warm hospitality

The letter was published in Daily Dawn on 21 December 2010

IN May 2008 China’s provinces Gansu and Sichuan had a devastating earthquake. The government of Pakistan had helped its brothers and sisters in China to overcome the miseries of that disaster.

To compliment Pakistanis, the Gansu province of China renamed their annual international sister city cultural exchange programme to cultural exchange programme. The programme was meant to invite the youth of different countries to see the Gansu province and the culture and traditions of Chinese society.

I was one of the Pakistani delegates who represented Pakistan in Gansu’s 2008 cultural exchange programme. I still remember the warm hospitality extended to the delegates by the government of Gansu, especially to Pakistani delegates.

Now when the prime minister of China visited Pakistan the other day, I would thank the people of Pakistan for extending their warmest hospitality
and would like to advise both the governments of China and Pakistan to work on such exchange programmes to groom agriculturalists, students, scientists, engineers, doctors, businessmen, military, etc.


Threat to the king

The letter was published in Daily Dawn on 12 December 2007

BAIRAM Khan, the Iranian noble, played a very important role in establishing Akbar’s rule in India during his early years in power. He asked the king to execute Hemu which Akbar refused and he himself went and decapitated Hemu.

This act posed a challenge to the king’s authority. He asked Bairam to go for Haj. Bairam Khan was executed on his way to Makkah.

This is one example when anybody who posed to be a threat to the king’s authority was given a chance to go for Haj and then disappeared.

The news of the Saudi ambassador meeting deposed chief justice Iftikhar, who declined a Haj invitation, sounds much like Bairam Khan’s story. It seems that we as a nation have not been able to come out from the primitive ages.

Today when we call the doffing of Musharraf’s uniform a ‘big step’, only God knows how many centuries it would take to get out of the authoritarian rule and bring true democracy where people will be allowed to decide and not be persecuted for belonging to different schools of thoughts.