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Former Pakistani diplomat penalized on charges of sexual harassment

Saira Imdad Ali said that she was stationed at the Pakistan Mission in Italy in 2018. She said the diplomat asked her to visit other cities in the country which was not related to her work.

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Former Pakistani diplomat Nadeem Riaz has been penalized on the charges of sexual harassment. He has been found guilty of sexually harassing a woman official. Federal Ombudsperson for Protection against Harassment Kashmala Tariq decided in the favor of the complainant after the allegations of sexual harassment were proved against him.

A 20th Grade Officer Saira Imdad Ali in the Ministry of Commerce had accused Head of Mission in Italy Nadeem Riaz of sexually harassing her at the workplace. The ombudsperson fined Nadeem Riaz Rs.5 million. The amount will be paid to the complainant as compensation. Kashmala Tariq also ordered that a copy of the decision must be sent to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs within seven days.

It is noteworthy to mention that the decision has come after his retirement. While the complaint was filed when he was in service. The diplomat retired in 2020.

Read more: Calling men bald at workplace tantamount to sexual harassment

Saira Imdad Ali said that she was stationed at the Pakistan Mission in Italy in 2018. She said the diplomat asked her to visit other cities in the country which was not related to her work.

She said he insisted she listen to his stories on daily basis and often the language used was objectionable. Saira said that he forced him to keep her residence near his residence.

Not the first time

This is not the first time a Pakistani diplomat has been punished on allegations of sexual harassment. In December 2021, a senior Pakistani top diplomat had faced a high level inquiry by Pakistan’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs for allegations of sexual harassment, misconduct with a local Chinese staffer and financial embezzlement at the Pakistan Consulate General in Chengdu.

Ministry of Foreign Affairs had received credible reports against Mehmood Akhter Mehmood, Acting Consul General, from its embassy in Beijing of alleged sexual harassment of a local female Chinese staffer. The local staffer at first was scared of losing her job but later sent a a complaint on email with Chinese Foreign Ministry. The Chinese Foreign Ministry shared the details with the Pakistani Ambassador to Beijing Moeen ul Haq who later shared the details with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Islamabad for investigation.