Following complaints against the EDO (education), Punjab Education Minister Rana Mashhood visited his office where the complainants including local public parliamentarians blamed him for non-cooperation and incompetency to tackle the educational issues in the district.

MPA Hassan Riaz told the minister that whenever he phoned the EDO Tariq Rafiq, he did not bother to attend his call during the last 10 days. MPA Arif Sandhila said that the EDO himself inaugurated all the projects completed by the funds of Punjab government. Even he did not bother to invite the local public representatives for inauguration of new projects, the MPA said.

Another parliamentarian, Ali Asghar Manda, who too was annoyed by the EDO, said that the Government Girls College Sharqpur was working without its head for the last 3 years but nobody listened to his voice. MPA Faizan Khalid disclosed that in village Ghazi Androon, about 400 students are forced to get education from a single teacher. Despite repeated complaints, the EDO did not respond, he added. All the complainants including MNAs, MPAs demanded removal of the officer from district as early as possible.

In the past, several protests were held by the clerical and non-clerical staff against the EDO. During his last posting in district Nankana, a large number of Nankana teachers and staff had held protest against him during a ceremony. Even some of them hurled shoes at him and asked him to leave Nankana.

On the complaints, the minister warned the EDO to change his behaviour with the public representatives and staffers of the Education Department otherwise strict action would be taken against him.

He emphasised the parliamentarians to monitor low-performing schools in their constituency and improve their condition and lift quality education. He said that the Punjab government under the dynamic leadership of Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif had spent billions of rupees on the provision of facilities in schools under the Education Road Map Programme. He said under Chief Ministers Parho Punjab Barho Punjab Programme, more than 11 million children would be enrolled in schools by 2018. He said that the government had recruited more than 140,000 educators purely on merit.

When this scribe visited his office, the EDO was neither present nor he received his call at his mobile.