Under title “Improving service delivery through improved advocacy and outreach”, I came across a very heartening piece “A communication strategy for the Federal Ombudsman of Pakistan”. It detailed different steps our so kind Federal Ombudsman intended to take one of which is “Design a new logo and standardize email addresses.
When the so called dictator believing on justice established the ombudsman system in Pakistan, he appointed a person who truly fitted for the post and who truly himself believed on “delivery of justice on universal principles of natural justice and not just issuing of decision”. Accordingly, this noble man took such bold true steps which never were seen later nor can now be expected. For example, the Law establishing the Federal Ombudsman gave right of appeal to the Government Department concerned and not to the complainant. The noble man, Mr. Justice Sardar Iqbal, terming it injustice and unfair, not taking shelter that the relevant law did not mention allowing, at his own motion allowed the unsatisfied complainants also to file review petition. Such God fearing noble man, true to his intent, designed his office official Logo which read “Ombudsman – Citizens Friends”. The subsequent lot of ombudsmen, true to their “merit of appointments” by the democracy lover rulers, and true to their own understanding of justice to the commoners, removed the wording viz Citizens Friends from the Logo. A Director General in the Secretariat once wrote that after departure of noble man Mr. Justice Sardar Iqbal, the sympathies in the Secretariat for the aggrieved common man soon finished. Even in this too old age, I do remember how sometime early 2000 (perhaps), a poor labourer working in Bahrain met with an industrial accident. In the grip of running machine his fingers and throat came. The local press covered him on front pages. On his then death bed, he thumb impressed his complaint to the Federal Ombudsman when in return the Secretariat, forgetting any remotest human sympathy for a critically motionless person, ordered him to fill up (not necessarily required) a complaint Form, threatening thereon that if he failed to do so “adverse” action could be taken against him. As a conscientious citizen, I formally in writing repeatedly approached the Federal Ombudsman to quote which law prescribed or allowed his Secretariat to take any “adverse” action against a complainant in such a case except for closing of complaint. The Ombudsman never even acknowledged me let alone investigate it or properly respond.
What in true real term would this new logo benefit to the aggrieved? During Benazir’s second tenure, colour change scheme of all express trains was announced. On inaugural ceremony at Karachi Cantt for departure of coloured changed Tezgam, the railways minister on a question answered that this change would boost the ticketless travelers to buy tickets. God had soon mercy on the nation. Before second train Tezro could undergo this colour change, Benazir’s government went home. Now body till today knows how many ticketless travelers bought tickets, but one thing is on official record that as to how much orders for paint supply were placed by the railways on the paint factory owned by the brother of the then railways minister.