KARACHI: The Sindh government has imposed gag order on all the public servants including the Sindh police officials.
The order has probably been issued after a video statement of alleged target killer of the Muttahida Qaumi Movement-London (MQM-L) was released while under police custody. He had claimed of having a meeting with Sindh Chief Minister Murad Ali Shah.
After this order, no government official would be allowed to participate in media talk and TV programmes or give information publicly without prior permission in this regard.
A copy of the notification has been sent to the Planning & Development Board chairperson, the Board of Revenue senior member, all additional chief secretaries, principal secretary to chief minister, principal secretary to governor, administrative secretaries, inspector general of police, all commissioners and all deputy commissioners.
“Certain government officers/ civil servants have been seen taking part in television talk shows/ programmes and tendering their opinion without prior authorization of the respective competent authority which is against the rules.
“In this regard attention is invited to Rule-56 (I) of the Sindh government Rules of Business 1986 which states that no government servant shall, unless generally or specially authorized in this behalf, communicate to the press, officials other government offices or any private individual, any information acquired directly or indirectly from official record or in the discharge of his official duties,” reads the notification.
The provincial government has said that only a minister or secretary may be authorized to act as spokesman of the government.
The notification further reads that “Rule-22 of Government Servants (Conduct) Rules 1964 (Rules governing the Conduct of the federal government officers) and Rule-23 of the Sindh Civil Servants (Conduct) Rules, 2008 which in essence say that no civil servant shall, in any document published, or in any public utterance or radio broadcast delivered or in any TV program attended by him, make any statement of fact of opinion or act in a manner which is capable of embarrassing the central of any provincial government.”