The federal government has stressed that the appointment of new chairman National Telecommunication Corporation has been made strictly in accordance with the prescribed rules in a transparent manner.
Commenting on a news story published on Thursday, a spokesman of NTC said Mr Wasi Muhammad Khan misled the media and the honourable court by misquoting rules and facts.
The spokesman said that the Islamabad High Court never issued any restraining order against the appointment of NTC chairman as claimed by Mr Wasi Muhammad. In fact, the appointment was made after seeking necessary legal advice from the ministry of law and justice, which made it clear that the appointment can be made if the work of NTC is likely to suffer in the absence of chairman.
The fact is that the post of chairman NTC had been vacant for the past two years and the corporation was functioning on an ad-hoc basis since Feb 2011.
The ministry of IT had advertised the post of chairman NTC in MP-I scale in July 2012 in the leading newspapers of the country as per the prescribed rules. In response around 60 candidates had applied and 14 were short-listed. The senior officers of NTC including Mr Wasi Muhammad Khan had also applied for the post. The selection committee, duly approved by the prime minister and headed by the secretary IT conducted interviews as per laid down procedure defined in the Establishment Division’s O.M No. 6/4/96-R3 dated 10-5-1997 adopted by NTC in its Service Regulations 2008 (Rule 1.1 and 2.1).
The selection committee recommended a panel of three candidates in order of merit, placing Brig (R) Viqar Rashid Khan at the position No.1 followed by Mazhar Hussain and Mushtaq Ahmad. As per procedure the summary was approved by the prime minister.
Meanwhile Wasi Muhammad Khan who was also a candidate but did not attend the interview filed a write petition against the selection process.
The spokesman said Wasi Khan twisted the facts to his advantage in his petition. He prayed to the honourable court for the appointment of NTC chairman in accordance with the prescribed rules, which were already being followed by the government.
“It is evident that the appointment has been made as per defined rules and Mr. Wasi Muhammad Khan has misinterpreted the court orders and misguided the media by providing incomplete information just to blackmail the government,” the spokesman said.
He said the NTC is an important and sensitive organisation, providing telecommunication and IT services to federal and provincial governments including the armed forces and the judiciary. The corporation is likely to play a key role in the up-coming elections and cannot be left without the chairman.
The spokesman said the selection process was supervised by the minister IT Dr Sania Nishtar and secretary IT Zafar Iqbal Qadir.
When contacted by The News, Wasi Muhammad maintained that court did issue a restraining order and denied that he had intentionally misled the court and the media. However, he failed to mention the relevant rule that was violated in the appointment of NTC chairman.