Karachi: 150-year old commissionerate system has been enforced in Sindh, the second most populous province of Pakistan. This system had ceased to function ten years back. But now after a lapse of 10 years it has been revived. This system is already in place in other provinces of Pakistan.
Sindh acting governor Nisar Ahmed Khuhro restored the commissionerate system and police act by passing three ordinances on July 9.on the behest of the federal government after the Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM) parted ways with the ruling Pakistan People’s Party (PPP).
According to the new ordinance Police act 1862 is now in place with the Police act 2002 being defunct. Revenue act 1967 has been amended to restore housing system 1979.
Former military ruler Pervez Musharraf had terminated the Police act of 1861 by an ordinance, restoring the Local government ordinance 2001. As a result Karachi was given the status of city government, while the number of districts in Sindh were increased.
According to the ordinance passed by Nisar Ahmed Khuhro, 22 district governments, 119 town & Tehsil administrations and TMO’s of province Sindh have ceased to function. While on the other hand, according to the old system Karachi Metropolitan Corporation has been restored in Karachi and district Municipal Corporation in other districts of Sindh.
With the restoration of old system, commissioners have been appointed in all the five divisions of Sindh, namely Karachi, Hyderabad, Mirpurkhas, Sukkur and Larkana. Also deputy commissioners have been appointed in all the districts of Sindh. Order to freeze funds and accounts of all districts have been issued.
With the restoration of 150-year old system all departments that had been handed over to the districts have been taken back and will now function under the vigilance of Sindh government. An inquiry has been ordered into the closure of 7700 schools during the former government. Status of EDO’s in the department of education has been replaced with the status of directorate.
Departments of investigation and operation in Police and posts of regional police officers have been abolished. Promotions and transfers of 17 and 18 grade police officers will now be decided by I.G Sindh, while interior ministry will decide the promotions and transfers of DSP level officers.
300,000 employees of 19 departments will now function under the provincial government.
The provincial government has now regained control school, education, sports, hospitals, basic health units, department of agriculture, livestock, fisheries, forestry, labor, social servive, planning, finance, environment, rural development, transport, revenue, human resources and community service from the district governments.
The commissionerate system had been imposed by the British and was since then still in place until 2001, when the then president general Pervez Musharraf introduced the local government system and transferred several powers from the provincial government to the district governments. After the expiry of the term of districst governments, the commissionerate system had been restored in the other provinces of Pakistan but due to the uncertain political situation in Sindh, the local government system was not replaced.
People of Sindh, nationalist parties, religious and political parties have welcomed the restoration of 150-year old system. Muttahida Qaumi Movement on the other hand has decided to approach the court against the commissionerate system.