Christian woman files contempt plea for ignoring minority quota in army

    A Christian woman has asked the Lahore High Court to initiate contempt proceedings against the establishment division secretary for not fulfilling his undertaking about the allocation of a five per cent job quota for minorities in the armed forces.

    As per the details, petitioner Faiza Mushtaq Gill has contended that the court in March disposed of a writ petition in light of an undertaking by the establishment division secretary that the Recruitment Policy of 2014 would be implemented with all prescribed quotas, including for minorities.

    However, the respondent failed to implement his undertaking, as reflected in a recent media advertisement for the recruitment of females as captains in the Pakistan army.

    She pleaded that the failure of the respondent to implement the settled laws and the policy of quotas for minorities in all recruitment amounted to a sheer violation of the order of the LHC and was sufficient for the initiation of proceedings for contempt of court.

    The petitioner also asked the court to prosecute and convict the establishment secretary for contempt of court and order him to implement the undertaking.

    The hearing of the contempt petition has been fixed for Friday (today) before Justice Shams Mahmood Mirza.


    In 2009, the government of Pakistan reserved a minimum of five per cent job quota for minorities, which was intermittently followed by similar provisions from the provincial governments.

    Evidence, however, indicates that it has not shown due results as members of the country’s vulnerable religious minorities remain unable to take advantage of the affirmative action with over 30,000 minority seats in various government departments remaining vacant despite the passage of nearly 14 years.

    While minority leaders have repeatedly voiced their concerns over the state’s failure to ensure provision of said government sector jobs, last year, the Supreme Court also expressed its concern over the vacant job slots.

    The government, however, remains unable to ascertain why the minority employment quota has not worked and how non-compliance could have been avoided.

    Experts believe the absence of minority employees is open to many plausible interpretations varying from compliance and implementation of quota to hostile political environment, social resistance, practical neglect and also lack of stringent constitutional and sub-ordinate legislation and rules to ensure its compliance.

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