Instead of following the legal practice as to give due promotions to existing employees as per prescribed formula, the Higher Education Commission (HEC) authorities have planned to “upgrade” around 30 senior employees of various cadres in order to oblige some “blue-eyed,” Daily Times has learnt reliably. As per establishment directives the up-gradation can’t be made to benefit any particular individual. “The up gradation can’t be made to benefit a particular individual in terms of promoting him to a higher post and further providing him with the avenues of lateral appointment or transfer or posting. In order to justify the up-gradation, the government is required to establish that the department needs restructuring reforms of to meet exigency of service in the public interest”, said a letter of establishment division, clarified that “in absence of these preconditions up-gradation is not possible” However, the sources said that the Finance and Planning Committee (F&PC) took up the case of up-gradation of employees from grade 15 to grade 18. “If a post has no promotion inline then there is no legal harm to upgrade it but in the other case the authorities concerned are liable to gross violation of rules,” a senior official said while wishing anonymity. “Now the ED approved the up-gradation of 27 officers of BPS-17 and BPS-18,” he said termed it “a surprising move and it was merely to oblige some specific He also said that the external members of F&PC also expressed their concerns over such unlawful practices. He added that most of the decisions are being taken by Executive Director (ED) Dr Shaista Sohail who is working at the commission on provisional charge. As per HEC act, the ED is principal accounting officer and second most key administrative slot after chairman. Nowadays, the commission is running without a chairman and Dr Shaista Sohail is looking after almost all affairs of the HEC. The Upgradatiing employees from BPS 17 to BPS 18 are included as Shafi ur Rehman, Abdul Fateh Bhatti, Syed Afaq Ahmad, Niaz Hussain Channa, Muhammad Ghazanfar Bhatti, Huma Akbar, Muhammad Tajammal Khan, Naila Haroon, Sajjad Ahmad, Ahsan Hameed, Syed Ali Raza Jafferi, Riaz Ahmed, Sadia Bukhari, Ghafoor Ahmad, Azizullah Khan, Rehan Jamil, Riaz ul Haq, Syed Hasan Raza Rizvi, Zahid Abdullah, Sultan Zeb, Syed Ali Akbar Naqvi, Wajid Ali Saleem, Amjid Hussain Shah and Hatam Khan The list of officials who have been upgraded from BPS 18 to BPS 19 consisted on Farida Anjum, Nouman Naseer, Qayyum Azam, Rizwan Shaukat, Afeefa Irshad and Aziz Ullah. The sources said that the authorities deliberately delayed the new appointment of Deputy Directors (DDs) as they actually intended to upgrade the said officials from BPS-17 to BPS-18 before the appointment of DDs take place. As per document, the HEC advertised to t fill the 30 vacant positions of Assistant Directors (ADs) and 9 DDs to in September 2021 while written tests for these posts also conducted in December 2021. After completing all other coddles formalities, the shortlisted candidates were asked to provide their academic and professional documents in April. During this period, a well-informed official said while wishing anonymity, some officers of HEC in BPS 17 moved a file of their upgradation from BPS 17 to BPS 18 which, he explained, was totally against the aforementioned clear direction of the establishment division. He regretted that the body, which formulates policies for above 200 public sector and many private universities, is facing such severe kinds of irregularities. He suggested that instead of maligning all laws for their small interests, the authorities direly needed to “mend their fences” for the institutional betterment. When approached ED Dr Shaista Sohail refused to give a version over the issue. However, another senior official who wished not to be quoted defended the upgrades and also claimed the interviews of advertised posts have been accomplished and further process would be done soon. “Interviews of ADs were completed in July last year and the authorities also conducted interviews from shortlisted candidates for the post of DDs in recent,” he recalled.