Right to Employment of Special Citizens
CP-D No. 3992 of 2016 [Amin Muhammad and Others Versus Province of Sindh and Others]
The above mentioned petition was filed by PILER, Dar-Ul-Sukun Welfare Society and other Special Citizen (disable/handicapped) before the Honourable High Court of Sindh, in order to seek enforcement and the implementation of the Sindh Differently Able Persons (Employment, Rehabilitation and Welfare) Act, 2014. On 29th December, the Disable Persons Ordinance 1981, was promulgated to provide for the employment, rehabilitation and welfare of disabled persons. In 2012 a constitutional petition was filed for the enforcement of this Ordinance and the Honourable High Court of Sindh, through orders dated: 25.03.2014, 10.09.2014 and 25.09.2014, directed the Sindh Government to enforce the Ordinance. However, no proper implementation or enforcement of the Ordinance was carried out.
Later on, the Sindh Government passed, The Sindh Differently Able Persons Act, 2014, on 18.03.2015. Under this Act the Sindh Government had to constitute a council consisting of a chairman and more than eighteen members, that will be empowered to execute the policy made by the Government for the employment, rehabilitation and welfare of differently able persons.The Act also provide for the 2% quota for employment of differently able people in all establishments including Private Sector and the establishment, which does not employ differently able persons,has to pay the amount equal to the salary that it would have to pay to the differently able persons have they been employed. The Act also require the Government to establish Rehabilitation Fund, that will consist of the sum paid by the establishment, grants made by Federal Government, Provincial Government or local bodies and Donations. This Fund shall be used for establishing training centers.
However, the council was constituted through notification-dated 13.06.2017, but it was not constituted in accordance with the Act and up till this date no meeting of this council has been called. Moreover, the Sindh Government failed to establish the Rehabilitation Fund and the Training Center. Therefore, despite the lapse of 34 years, since the ordinance was promulgated and the lapse of two years, since the Act was passed, Sindh Government has failed to enforce both the Ordinance and the Act.
On 09.02.2017, the Hounorable High Court of Sindh ordered the Additional Director of Social Welfare department, to appear before the Court on the next date of hearing and ordered the petitioner to submit the Proposed Action Plan, setting out stepwise, the various actions, which need to be taken in order to implement the Act in a meaningful manner. On 23.02.2017, the petitioner submitted the Proposed Action Plan before the Honourable High Court of Sindh.
The Petitioner No.1 filed for withdrawal of the Petition as his grievance has been addressed. On 21.07.2017, the Honourable Court dismissed the dismissed the Petition of Petitioner No.1, however the petition for rest of the petitioners stayed pending.
On 25.10.2017, the Honourable High Court of Sindh, appreciated the efforts of counsel for petitioners for preparing such a detailed action plan. The Court also requested the Additional Advocate General and the counsel for the petitioners to sit with the Focal Person (Mr. Nasir Hussain Qazilbash, Deputy Director of the Social Welfare Department), to discuss the Proposed Action Plan and extract not more than three or four proposed actions from the plan, which can be implemented through appropriate directions and orders from the Court.
On 04.12.2017, a Joint Statement was filed in the Court in compliance of the Order dared: 25.10.2018. It was agreed by the Additional Advocate General, Deputy Director of the Social Welfare Department and Counsel for the Petitioner that Proposed Action No. 4, 6, 11 and 16 should be implemented immediately towards the implementation of the Sindh Differently Able Persons (Employment, Rehabilitation and Welfare) Act, 2014.
On 23.05.2018, Deputy Director Social Welfare Department submitted comments in the Court. It was stated in the comments that 27 Medical Assessment Boards for registration of differently-able persons in Sindh have been established. A worksheet was also attached with the comments, which showed that at least 35,533 differently-able persons have been registered throughout Sindh, but no further progress have been shown as to whether these differently-able persons have been given jobs or not. The Council for the rehabilitation of differently-able persons have been constituted through notification dated 13.06.2016, however, no funds have been created to implement the Act.
On 25.05.2018, a compliance report was submitted in the Court, by Deputy Director Social Welfare Department, to show that the 3rd meeting was convened and Summary has been moved to the Chief Minister Sindh, for release of requisite funds to the authority. The Director Social Welfare also showed the draft of public notice for private establishments, which was sent to information department, Government of Sindh, to create awareness in private establishments so that they may make some provision for employment of differently-able persons in their establishment. A letter was also written to Director (Advertisement) Information Department, requesting publication in three leading newspapers. The Court also directed that the notice should be broadcasted through electronic media including PTV. The Social Welfare Department was also directed to release public notice for general awareness of differently-able persons including the process of their registration with the address of the nearest office where they can go and file their applications for registration. The Court also directed that the Funds should be release before or on the next date of hearing and progress report should be submitted in the Court.
It is important to mention here that the Sindh Government has recently passed the Sindh Empowerment of ‘Persons with Disabilities’ Act 2018.
The Petition is pending adjudication before the High Court of Sindh.
The following documents are available for viewing online:
- Memo of Constitution Petition
- High Court Order dated 09.02.2017 & 23.02.2017
- High Court Order dated 25.10.2017
- High Cout Order dated 21.07.2017
- Proposed Action Plan
- Joint Statement
- High Court Order dated 23.05.2018
- Compliance Report of Social Welfare Department
- High Court Order dated 25.05.2018
- Sindh Empowerment of ‘Persons with Disabilities’ Act 2018