State Bank of Pakistan restores Saturday as holiday for banks

Saturday as holiday

In less than a month after the federal government raised working hours for banks and government agencies, the State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) said on Friday that it would return to a five-day work period by reinstating Saturday as a bank holiday.

On April 13, the central bank said that it was boosting bank working hours in response to federal government demands by classifying Saturday, which is normally a holiday, as a working day.

Today, however, the central bank reversed that decision, declaring that banks will remain closed on Saturdays throughout the country.

According to the SBP, banks will be open Monday through Thursday from 9:00 a.m. to 17:00 p.m., with prayer and lunch breaks from 13:30 to 14:15 p.m.

Read more: PM Shehbaz Sharif abolishes Saturday off for government employees

On Fridays, banks will be open from 9:00 a.m. to 18:00 p.m., with a break for lunch and prayers from 13:30 to 14:30 p.m.

Govt Offices to Continue Having Six Workdays

According to a notification sent on Friday, the federal government has chosen not to reverse its decision to have six workdays including Saturday not a holiday in government departments.

Work hours at government offices have been cut, according to the directive issued by the cabinet secretariat of the Establishment Division after approval from Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif.

Government offices will now be open from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. Monday through Thursday and Saturday. Between 1 and 1:30 p.m., there will be a prayer break. On Fridays, the hours will be 8 a.m. to 1 p.m.

With new PM Shehbaz’s sudden presence early in the morning alarmed staff and officers who had not yet arrived at the PM Office on his first day.

Shehbaz Sharif, who is famed for his punctuality, arrived at the Prime Minister’s Office at 7 a.m. on his first day in charge. Officers and other PM Office personnel who had not arrived by that time hastened to work to avoid the newly elected PM’s displeasure.

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