ASIA/PAKISTAN – Appeal from a Catholic politician: “No” to rules and job advertisements that discriminate and dishonor religious minorities

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Karachi – “In public job postings for ecological operators and the cleaning of streets and sewers, reference is still made to the necessary requirement of ‘reserved for non-Muslims’. This embarrasses me as a non-Muslim MP. I humbly address my request to the government of Sindh to facilitate the enactment of laws that block these discriminatory advertisements, published by state bodies, that dishonor members of religious minorities”, said Anthony Naveed, a lay Catholic and member of the Provincial Assembly of Sindh, speaking in recent days in a session of the provincial Parliament.
Commenting on his intervention to Fides, Anthony Naveed explains: “I have presented the request for adequate legislation, so that no official of the state departments can publish job advertisements that feed religious discrimination or dishonor religious minorities”. And he urges: “The government of Sindh province, led by the People’s Party of Pakistan has always worked for the protection of religious minorities and disadvantaged communities: I appeal to the current government of Sindh to take the initiative to introduce a ‘legislation in favor of minorities’ on this matter which could also serve as a guideline for other provinces”. Anthony Naveed goes on to explain that: “In recent years it has also been observed that advertisements of this kind, which explicitly reserve less qualified jobs for non-Muslim, are posted in the province of Sindh, but also in the provinces of Punjab, Baluchistan and Khyber Pakhtun Khwa”. And he continues: “It is a question of mentality, which implies a contempt for non-Muslims: why link a job to religious identity? Such announcements can be published simply by omitting the reference to religion. I think this way of proceeding damages the image of an office or a public department and of our beloved country as a whole”. In this campaign of equality and responsible citizenship, “I ask for the support of the members of my political party, the PPP, and of all people of good will in politics and civil society, in being the voice of the voiceless in promoting the rights and human dignity of all citizens, without any discrimination of a cultural, social or religious nature”. concludes Anthony Naveed.