LAHORE: Doubts about prospects for their promotion compelled at least 10 bright officers of the Pakistan Customs Service (PCS) group to resign at the middle-management level over the last four years and many more are planning to follow suit due to an acute blockage in their promotion.
Between 1996 and 2002, the number of officers inducted into the PCS batches 24 to 29 was more than double the normal number of officers inducted yearly. Over 30 officers were inducted into the group during each year of the six-year period because the then PPP government had planned to enhance the role of sales tax in domestic economy.
Background interviews carried out and official documents seen by Dawn reveal that the massive induction into PCS was followed by transfer of the subject of sales tax to the income tax group in 2009, which created doubts in the minds of PCS officers about their prospects for promotion.
Before 2009, the subject of sales tax collection was with PCS, but most of the officers were reluctant to be posted in the sales tax collectorates. The only benefit for PCS was that it enjoyed more grade-wise cadre strength so the prospects for promotion were better than in the income tax group then.