“It is a promising sign that the rights of minorities and women are being upheld,”
Some teachers from the audience told The Express Tribune they have raised questions about the selection criteria. “It is a promising sign that the rights of minorities and women are being upheld,” A relative of Dr Om Prakash. PHOTO:
Four sisters belonging to a Hindu family from Nabi Sir Union Council of District Umerkot have been appointed as Junior School Teachers (JST) on merit – a pleasant surprise for all candidates who appeared for the test. Previously, it was reported that all seven sisters of the family had been appointed, but the women’s father and higher authorities confirmed that only four of the sisters had been recruited.
Their appointment orders were handed over by the provincial education minister, Nisar Ahmed Khuhro, at a ceremony held in Mirpurkhas on Thursday. The ceremony was attended by top officials of the division and public representatives among other notable figures of the area, where 779 successful candidates were given recruitment orders.
After receiving the orders, the sisters’ father, Dr Om Prakash, had confirmed to The Sindh Express on Thursday, that all seven of his daughters had passed the required tests for the appointment, adding that they have received the appointment orders as well. “I am very happy. It shows that our daughters are educated and are able to compete,” he added proudly.
After the report was published in The Sindh Express on Friday, Dr Prakash received several calls for comments from the media. He feared that the orders would be cancelled as the authorities would not appreciate that seven orders had been given to members of the same family. He denied his earlier statements and maintained that only four of his daughters were recruited in the education department.
On the other hand, the worried father claimed that a media trial had been launched against his family and when contacted by The Express Tribune, he refused to comment on the orders. Speaking to The Express Tribune, relatives of the family claimed that three of the sisters were married, which was why Dr Parkash had confirmed the appointment of just four of his daughters. “What is wrong if all seven sisters are given the recruitment orders?” a relative questioned. “It is a promising sign that the rights of minorities and women are being upheld.” Most of Dr Prakash’s family comprises highly qualified professionals, including doctors and engineers.
“I can confirm that four of Dr Parkash’s daughters have been recruited in the education department as JST teachers,” said Mirpurkhas division’s education director, Jalil Ahmed Lashri. “I am not sure if seven sisters have been selected but if they have, their selection is purely on merit,” he added.
Lashari said that candidates from minorities’ families were equally intelligent and could contend in any competitive examinations. “The criteria set for the recruitment was very tough,” he claimed.
Around 30,000 candidates appeared for the tests and according to the education department’s officials, those who performed well and met the criteria, have been appointed.
“We can’t overcome the existing education issues in this particular sector until and unless merit is given priority,” said Lashari. “The majority of successful nominees belonged to very humble family backgrounds. I have rarely seen a person with a new shoe among the recruits,” he justified.
The basic pay scale of the JST is 14 and the monthly salary would be over Rs15,000. A candidate has to sign an affidavit that they will not be allowed to move from their original appointment place for at least three years.
Besides the merit quota, Lashari said that selection was carried out on certain quotas, including five per cent minority quota, 10 per cent taluka quota and two per cent quota for disabled.