Govt Mulls over Re-introducing Friday as Weekly Holiday

13 Feb, 2019

Chitral: The concept of weekly holiday on Friday which was replaced by then PM Nawaz Sharif in March 1997 to Sunday later to be increased to two days a week ie Saturday and Sunday, is again likely to be reverted to Friday. The PM has consulted the religious representatives of all schools of thought in Pakistan who unanimously recommended Friday as the best day for a weekly holiday.  The President of Pakistan has also strongly endorsed this suggestion. Looking at it logically, half of the traders, schools and almost all labourers  etc are already observing Friday as holiday and nothing can make them change their stance on this. The result is that there is always a confusion.

Aside from the religious aspect, practically also Friday is the best day to have the weekly holiday. Currently if one visits a govt office on a Friday at 11 am you will find the staff missing and the reason given would be that “it is Friday today and the staff has gone for Friday prayer preparation”.

Virtually, there is less than 50 percent output in the offices and commercial centers on a Friday. It is therefore only sensible and practicable to have Friday as weekly off day and the rest of the six days office working hours should be from 0800 hrs to 1330 hrs without any break. Zuhr prayers/lunch should be attended to after Office closing hours. This way the production will double and office workers would have time with their families every day instead of waiting for long weekends. We should not copy the west blindly as their living/working conditions are very different to ours. In Pakistan 90 percent of office work is done up till 1330 hrs. After that it is mostly lousing and marking time. .. CN report, 13 Feb 2019

1 Comment

  • Wg Cdr (r) Fardad Ali Shah says:

    This would indeed be a wise thing to do. Friday is any way virtually an almost half day. Like mentioned in the report if you visit an office at 11 am on Friday, the staff will be reluctant to take up a job simply saying “it is Friday today, come on Monday”. On Friday the office virtually starts winding up at 11 am for Friday prayers and when it reopens at 3 pm it is almost time to pack up.
    In the present arrangement there is no fixed timing for offices. Some provincial offices close at 2 Pm some at 4 pm etc. When only Friday was the weekly holiday and office timings were clearly defined and uniform all over for the rest of the six days.
    There was no problem coordinating with the international world when Friday was the weekly holiday, now communication is so much automated. Skeleton staff can work on Friday to cater for emergencies and take off on any other day in lieu.
    The whole idea is to work 40 hours a week including lunch break. If we omit lunch break and work for 6 hours a day for six days, it comes to same total hours with better efficiency as bonus.
    Hopefully the govt goes about this plan and is not distracted by those saying it is against the norms of the western world. There are so many things against the norms of the western world like us having a prayer break in the afternoon, which they don’t have, So, we should do what suits us. Not copy others blindly.