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LAHORE: Chairman Small and Medium Enterprise Development Authority (Smeda), Ministry of Industries, Hashim Raza said on Tuesday that he resigned in protest against the unconstitutional measures of April 3.

While addressing a press conference at Lahore Press Club, Hashim said that he was addressing the media in his personal capacity. He said that he was appointed CEO of Smeda by the federal government through a transparent process in 2020 and was part of the team that established Smeda from 1999 to 2004.

Explaining the reasons for his resignation, Hashim Raza said that the laws under which he performs his duties as the CEO are based on the 1973 Constitution. In that sense, it is possible for a “public servant” to obey the law and the Constitution. And because in his knowledge the actions of April 3, 2022 are likely to fall into the category of unconstitutionality, he is resigning in protest against them.

According to him, the law does not allow him to make practical politics or political statements. But in his personal capacity and as a Pakistani citizen, he has the right to have an opinion on legal, administrative and constitutional matters.

His statement is completely apolitical. The measures of 3rd April 2022, in his view, could create complex constitutional, legal and administrative problems for Pakistan in the near future, which would be very difficult to resolve.

Hashim Raza also clarified that these are his personal views and his institution, ministry has nothing to do with them.

Finally, he thanked those who congratulated him on his decision or requested that he reconsider. This includes Zulfiqar Thawar, head of UNISME, Pakistan’s oldest SME representative organisation. In response to all this, he said that my well-wishers should believe that they have made this decision very thoughtfully and to protest against any action which they consider unconstitutional is their only right as Pakistanis.

No, it is a duty. But it is their personal decision and everyone is free to make their own decisions.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2022

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