Fake admission to SMC | SSC exams resumed
Students attending classes without legal admission in the college
Karachi, April 13: It has been alleged that during the checking of the first
semester of the MBBS first year, the Sindh Medical College (SMC) Academic
Council Principal and Chairman found two students, Nazia Perveen and Sonia
Seher, attending classes without legal admission in the college.
report made by the SMC Academic Council's Principal and Chairman, the Enquiries
and Anti-Corruption Establishment Chairman has ordered a thorough probe into the
matter. Enquiries by Anti-Corruption Establishment revealed that during routine
checking, Parveen d/o Ghous Bux Khand and Seher d/o Shamshad Ali were attending
classes without legal admission at Sindh Medical College, Karachi. Perveen was
in possession of a fake ID card of SMC and on further investigations, she also
presented a fake admission letter, along with fake fee voucher of Dow University
of Health Sciences, whereas, Sonia Seher failed to produce any documents in her
support and stated that she was just attending the lecture. Perveen admitted to
making fake documents in order to get in the college. App
"This is very shameful act, & who ever do this is able to punish strictly."
Name: Samuel Peterson
City, Country: Houston, USA
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SSC exams resume today under ad hoc arrangements
Karachi: The Secondary School Certificate Part-I and II (Class IX and
X) Science group annual examinations resume on Monday after a break of four days
amid reports of some internal arrangements having been made to fill the void
created by the sacking of three top officials of the Board of Secondary
Education Karachi (BSEK).
The board's secretary, controller of
examinations and deputy controller of examinations - who were employed on a
contract basis - were sacked and seven other officials placed under suspension
on the recommendations of a two-member committee constituted by Sindh Governor
Dr Ishratul Ibad. The committee was assigned the task of investigating
malpractices in the on-going SSC examinations and discovery of an illegal
examination centre recently.
The seven officials facing action under the
Removal of Service Ordinance-2001 include two assistant controllers of
examinations and one system analyst.
Two important papers - Chemistry
(theory) of Class X and Biology (theory) of Class IX - are scheduled to be held
on Monday from 9am to 12noon and from 2pm to 5pm, respectively.
in the BSEK said on Sunday that the board's chairman had made ad hoc
arrangements to avoid any disruption in SSC examinations until appointment of
the sacked officials' successors.
According to the sources, the
senior-most deputy controller of examinations, Aminuddin, has been given the
charge of acting controller of examinations and the deputy secretary, Kalim
Asghar Kirmani, the charge of acting secretary of the board.
evening, Mr Aminuddin and all other board officials concerned, as well as
paper-setters, were present in the BSEK confidential branch to finalise
arrangements for Monday's papers.
Sources in the Governor's House
secretariat said that a final decision about the sacked officials'
successors would be taken in a couple of days.
The All-Pakistan Clerks
Association (APCA), Karachi chapter, has urged the governor to give preference
to the senior-most officials of the board in appointing the new officials.
In a statement issued here on Sunday, APCA senior vice president Khawar
Kamal Siddiqui hoped that outsiders, inexperienced or inefficient people would
not be brought in as the posts required highly-experienced hands from within the
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CS takes notice of textbooks' unavailability
Karachi: Sindh Chief Secretary Fazalur Rehman on Sunday advised the
department of supply and prices to make coordinated efforts in association with
the provincial education department and the Sindh Text Book Board (STBB) and
ascertain the causes of non-availability of textbooks at shops and markets or
their sale at higher prices.
Taking notice of the public complaints
received by his office, the chief secretary said that suitable arrangements must
be made to ensure a smooth supply of textbooks and other relevant academic
accessories to students at reasonable prices.
There should be no
compromise on material, he said, adding that attention must be paid to the
quality of printing in the case of textbooks.
Mr Rehman said that
although textbooks were being provided to the students of public schools free of
cost and at a subsidised rate to all other students, it was the responsibility
of the government functionaries to ensure availability and sale at the
The chief secretary also sought a report from the
education department about distribution of free textbooks to the students of
government schools, and noted that the department was assigned the task of
ensuring provision of the textbooks to each and every student latest by the
start of the new academic session. App
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NED explains position on audit report
Karachi: The registrar of the NED University of Engineering and
Technology has clarified that it has been repeatedly brought to the notice of
the Audit Department that the university, being an autonomous body, is not bound
by any decisions of the finance department. The Senate of the university,
presided over by the chancellor (governor of Sindh), has final authority on all
This clarification was issued with reference to a report in
Dawn's issue of March 18. The report was based on the audit report 2005-06 in
which it was pointed out that the university paid over Rs0.836 million as
non-practicing allowance to 162 engineers during the year 2004-05, which was not
Besides, over Rs0.80 million paid as advance to officials
were neither adjusted nor recovered.
The registrar in his clarification
referred to non-practicing allowance for engineers and said the allowance was
approved in the Senate meeting on Jan 11, 2000; minutes of this meeting were
approved vide letter No GS/3-II/99(SO-I)/1013 dated August 16, 2000.
This approval was shown to them (auditors); the statement that it was
not shown is false and malicious.
Regarding the recovery of advances,
the clarification said that there had been difficulties in recovery of these
temporary advances, especially during the period while one officer from the
audit department was on deputation to this university from 1-1-2004 to
31-10-2005. During this period the financial condition of this university was
also unsatisfactory; the director finance was continuously holding up bills of
contractors as well as payments to employees.
Only after this officer of
the audit department was removed from this university on October 31, 2005 was it
possible for its finances to stabilise. The position of advances on February 28,
2009 was only Rs1.694 million against the budget of Rs907 million, i.e. only
0.187 per cent of total expenditure. Dawn
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Botany Dept chief stakes claim to research
Karachi: University of Karachi (KU) Department of Botany Chairperson Dr
Surayya Khatoon has accused a senior colleague of claiming credit for and
publishing a work about mangrove growth in the close vicinity of the Keenjhar
Lake in Thatta district, which according to Khatoon, was discovered by her in
Dr Surayya Khatoon said that when the mangrove growth was first
discovered, it was as thick as a tropical rain forest with sunrays failing to
pierce through the thick canopy of the Avicennia trees. "It was indeed a unique
discovery as Avicennia marina, being a mangrove, was hitherto known to grow only
in inter-tidal zones at sea coasts. This mangrove stand, on the other hand, had
The discoverers continued to note their observations for
two years, but in the meantime, the timber mafia detected the forestation, and
the activity of wood-cutting and burning of trees started. The scientists Dr
Surayya Khatoon and Qadeer Muhammad Ali (both belonging to KU) had to make
public their discovery prematurely – in 2003 – in the hope that it would attract
the attention of government functionaries, and protective measures would be
taken to halt any further destruction of this unique mangrove stand.
authorities concerned however did not pay any heed to the mangroves; instead,
plagiarists felt it was an excellent target. An article by the title "A unique
basin mangrove stand of Indus delta" authored by KU's Dr S M Saifullah and
Karachi Port Trust's Fayyaz Rasool was published in the Pakistan Journal of
Oceanography in December 2007, in which the authors claimed to have discovered
this unique inland mangrove stand.
"Our scientific paper with detailed
chronological studies is still in process with a foreign journal, but there are
a number of other documents that unequivocally prove our claims. Various
newspapers published the news, after which this stand was shown to experts from
World Wildlife Fund (WWF), International Union for the Conservation of Nature
(IUCN), and the Sindh Forest Department (SWD). Even the then KU Vice-Chancellor
(VC) Dr Zafar Saeed Saify visited the site along with media personnel," Dr
The then VC had also appealed to the Sindh
Government to declare it as a protected site. All these events got wide coverage
not only in the local media. but also in international documents such as the
newsletter of US-based Mangrove Action Project (www.mangroveactionproject.org)
and the US-based Access My Library (www.acessmylibrary.com).
Editor-in-Chief of the Pakistan Journal of Oceanography was asked to retract the
plagiarized article, he downplayed the issue on the grounds that Dr Khatoon and.
Ali had not presented any scientifically published material. This argument,
particularly in this case, said Dr Khatoon, is absurd as there is ample evidence
to make a case of plagiarism against Dr Saifullah and Fayyaz Rasool. The
scientific articles (versus popular media articles) are considered authentic.
because they were reviewed by peers prior to publication. However in this case,
peer review of the original discovery has been practically done by the experts
from WWF, IUCN, SWD, and the former KU VC, and all relevant documents are
recorded in international archives, retrievable from relevant
Dr S M Saifullah, when contacted said that in his
opinion it was not a case of plagiarism. "We visited Keenjhar Lake area, and
noticed that the mangrove stand was being cleared by the timber mafia and road
builders. I thought it was the time that the discovery should be published,
which we did it with the best of our intentions. Besides, the Higher Education
Commission (HEC) and KU had constituted a Plagiarism Committee to investigate
the issue, and their findings cleared my colleague Fayyaz Rasool and me from
charges," he pointed out.
However, Saifullah's statement seems to be
based on verbal assertions, rather than any documentary evidence. The matter is
yet to be taken up by the Plagiarism Committee of the University. However, its
past record present a dismal picture as the KU has not yet taken any strong
action against any plagiarists. The News
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KU-Unesco accord on halophytes hit by financial crunch
Karachi: Facing a financial crisis due to budget cuts, the University
of Karachi is finding it difficult to honour an international agreement under
which it is required to establish a chair in sustainable halophyte utilisation
at one of its institutes, it has been learnt.
The halophyte, a plant which
grows in saline areas, has become a major focus of research over the recent
years throughout the world, especially in water-deficient countries, where
increasing soil salinity, pollution and mismanagement of freshwater resources
present a bleak scenario for human development.
Sources said the
University of Karachi signed a four-year agreement with the United Nations
Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (Unesco) eight months back
under which it's required to establish a chair in sustainable halophyte
utilisation at the Institute for Sustainable Halophyte Utilisation (ISHU),
Karachi University, in collaboration with the international organisation.
Though Unesco has many chairs on different subjects, this is the
organisation's first chair on halophytes, for which a KU institute has been
selected. Researchers at the institute say this initiative is in a way an
acknowledgement of the high quality research work being done by the institution
in the relevant field.
The purpose of the chair is to promote an
integrated system of research, training, information and documentation in the
field of halophyte utilisation and eco-physiology.
It is aimed to serve
as a means of facilitating collaboration between high-level, internationally
recognised researchers and teaching staff of the university and other
institutions in Pakistan, Asia and the Pacific region.
According to the
agreement, the objectives of the chair's activities are to explore the potential
of indigenous halophytic plants by using brackish water and saline soil and to
prepare a team of scientists capable of conducting state-of-the-art research in
various aspects of halophyte biology.
The chair is required to submit an
annual report to Unesco about its work and the organisation shall contribute to
the international dissemination of information on the experience and potential
benefits of the chair's activities.
Unesco shall also take steps to
facilitate participation of the university in its programmes and promote
exchange of researchers and students with other universities, besides
endeavouring to link the KU institute with the activities of other chairs and
The accord clearly states that all the
expenses for the chair's activities will be completely borne by the university.
Wherever possible, however, Unesco shall endeavour to provide 'seed money'. But,
for such a contribution a separate agreement is required to be signed.
Lack of initiative: There has been no initiative on part of the
KU administration so far to make a beginning by appointing staff for the chair,
which is the first requirement under the accord, the sources say.
major reason for delay in setting up the chair is reportedly the cuts in the
Higher Education Commission's budget, though the Pakistan National Commission
for Unesco was also partly responsible as they didn't act swiftly on the case.
The KU's vice-chancellor had signed the accord in the hope that funds
would be acquired later on.
When contacted, ISHU project director Prof
Dr M. Ajmal Khan said that the hiccups in establishing the chair would be
removed once funds would be available with the university.
chair would be established for the first time at the university. It is indeed a
great honour. Apart from government support, we also seek the help of private
investors who might find the research being carried out at the institute
useful," he remarked.
When Prof Dr G.A. Miana, an HEC nominee in the
university's syndicate, was asked if the university had forwarded any proposal
to the HEC for the implementation of the Unesco accord, he said the matter was
not in his knowledge.
"I am not aware that the KU vice-chancellor has
signed an agreement with Unesco. If the case is presented in the next syndicate
meeting, which is normally held at month's end, the commission will consider the
case on merit."
ISHU's contribution: Trials at the institute have
shown the recovery of edible oil from certain halophytic species, ranging from
22 per cent to 25 per cent with 65 to 74 per cent unsaturated fatty acids, which
are as good as other conventional edible oils.
Bilquees Gul, assistant professor at KU's botany department and principal
investigator of the seed oil project at the ISHU, said: "Pakistan can
significantly reduce its import bill on edible oil by making an investment in
the indigenous seed-bearing halophytes, which are found abundantly in the
country and can be grown in brackish water. Laboratory analysis shows that their
oil quality is comparable with conventional edible oils such as those from
sunflower and canola."
Seventy per cent shortfall of the nation's edible
oil requirement is currently met through imports to the tune of Rs38 billion
annually. Palm oil, which is said to be injurious to health for having 52 per
cent fat saturation, constitutes the bulk of these imports.
institute has also successfully made use of halophyte species as fodder.
Dr Ajmal elaborated: "The institute has a package that, if properly
implemented, can contribute significantly in rehabilitating saline land and
providing fodder in arid areas like coastal Balochistan that has plenty of
saline water resources.
The introduction of the grass will not only help
alleviate poverty but will also assist in meeting meat and dairy product
requirements of the country."
There are about 400 halophyte species in
Pakistan, of them 100 are found in coastal areas alone.
The institute is
also carrying out research for using this plant for medicinal purposes and as
The project is funded by the Higher Education Commission. Dawn
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