ISLAMABAD - The Supreme Court of Pakistan Wednesday directed the Khyber Pakhtunkhawa (KP) government to take action against officials who filed an appeal against the Service Tribunal decision to restore two employees of the education department after the stipulated time had passed.

A two-member bench of the apex court headed by Chief Justice Gulzar Ahmad conducted hearing of the appeal against the KP Service Tribunal.

The apex court expressed its annoyance over KP officials’ inability to file the appeal against the Service Tribunal within time. The Chief Justice said that the KP Education Department intentionally filed the appeal late. He added that this is irresponsible behavior from the department which is intolerable.

During the hearing, the KP additional advocate general (AAG) informed the bench that the KP Fitness Law Committee examines the cases fortnightly and decides whether to file an appeal against the decision of Tribunal and High Court or not.

Justice Gulzar said that almost every day they heard cases against the KP government. He said that the concerned committee should monitor the cases regularly. He also said, “We are not advising them, but it should look into the matter regularly.”

The bench maintained the order of KP Service Tribunal, which restored the two female employees of the KP Education Department. The tribunal had restored Rukhsana Begum and Ms Azmat into service. The education department had dismissed both the ladies for as they were not appointed in accordance with the laid down criteria.

Meanwhile, the same bench of the apex court also set aside the Service Tribunal decision to pay pension to an employee of KP Education department who remained absent from service for 18 years.

Justice Ijazul Ahsan noted that Muhammad Riaz remained absent from the service for 18 years. He questioned how an employee who remained absent for such a long period could be restored to the service.

The appellant lawyer contented that his client remained in service for 14 years therefore he is entitled for pension and the benefits. The AAG KP said that for forced retirement from service the period is 25 years.

The apex court accepted the KP government appeal and declared the decision of provincial tribunal null and void.