Obtaining CNIC, Passport and admission in Universities/colleges, purchasing of assets and so many other such types of jobs are not an easy task. Numerous formalities have to be fulfilled by one with regards to making attestation of photocopies of necessary documents. To complete such referred tasks is a hectic work as in the case of attestation of education testimonial, these documents must be attested by a Gazetted Officer who must be Grade-16 and above of Govt. or Grade-III and above Officers of nationalised banks and public sector financial institutions; similarly officers should have equivalent level of other public sector organisations.  

It was not so difficult when a large number of public sector organisations were available and their officers were empowered to attest such documents. We saw in last 15 years, enormous public sector institutions and banks, financial Institutions that have either been denationalised or acquired by some private entity from public sector. These include Habib Bank, United Bank, Allied Bank, PICIC, BEL, NDFC, Muslim Commercial Bank, PTCL, KESC and so many others. By virtue of this situation, the officers of these intuitions are not authorised to facilitate any citizen and the law does not permit them to do so as exercised by government officers. It is significant to mention that job seekers have to submit the attested photocopies of their educational and experience certificate before employer as per requirement. Similarly, in order to get a Birth and Death registration certificate and others, people are approached by Officers of Government, Semi Government, Autonomous Bodies, Semi-autonomous bodies Banks and Financial institutions etc. for attestation of Nadra’s Forms and related documents/testimonials. It has been noted that this aspect is more difficult because the Government is rapidly privatising all government institutions such as PIA, Pakistan Steel and so many others. As a result this situation will have more intricate consequences in future when more institutions would be privatised as per policy of Government. 

Authorised officers are reluctant to verify/attest the NADRA’s forms for obtaining Computerised National Identity Card (CNIC) and so very close relatives can sign. 

The general public is faced with great difficulties to locate government officers for this petty issue, sometimes documents are needed very frequently/urgently. Moreover, the situation in rural and remote areas of our country is further complicated where the tracing of gazetted officers is not an easy task. Would Government be requested to pay little attention to this public issue? 

It is suggested that attestation powers may be restored to officers of all banks and financial institutions as they are more capable and responsible rather it would be more appropriate that such facility is also granted to officers of prime/renowned multinational companies, in the larger interest of public. 

I would entreat the Honourable Prime Minster, Minster for Interior, Chairman NADRA and Chairman Standing Committee for Interior to look into this matter and pass suitable orders in the best interest of general public as the democratic elected government is responsible to facilitate/accommodate people of country through making appropriate policies, laws or modify available legal remedies. Also, all hurdles through old colonial laws should be removed in any case. 

NISAR AHMED,  

Karachi, March 22.