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SSC paper at a centre in Malirpostponed
Karachi, April 12: In view of a strike call given by a political party, the Secondary School Certificate (SSC) annual examinations for general group (class X) candidates could not be held at one of the examination centres located in Malir Town on Wednesday.

A spokesperson for the Board of Secondary Education Karachi said that the English-II paper was not conducted due to prevailing adverse circumstances in the city.

In all 250 candidates were registered for the paper at the Govt Boys Secondary School, Jinnah Square, Malir, the spokesperson said, adding that the question paper could not be delivered there due to resistance by some outside elements.

The centre superintendent, Shafi Mohammad Brohi said that students and examination staffs had gathered outside the centre in the morning, but they were not allowed to enter the centre.

The supporters of the strike call had asked them not to open the centre on Wednesday and that was communicated to the BSEK officials, he added.

A source privy to the examinations said that the Malir examination centre in question was included in the list of sensitive centres, but deployment of police was inadequate there.

The police came at the centre at around 10.30am on Wednesday, but remained silent, the source added.

New date of paper
BSEK controller of examinations Rafia Mallah said that a special paper in the case of the candidates who could not appear in the exams at the Malir Boys Secondary School on Wednesday would now be held on May 8, along with the candidates of the Science group who could not take their examinations on April 10 due to a transport strike in the city.

Eight caught using unfair means
In the meantime, two special vigilance teams caught eight candidates using unfair means during examinations at the National High School, Gulshan-i-Iqbal, on Wednesday.

Two persons were also caught trying to impersonate candidates at the same centre, said a BSEK press release. A team comprising chairman of the BSEK Prof Mohammad Saeed Siddiqui and controller of examination Raffia Mallah that caught the six of the candidates cheating in the exams and the two taking examinations in place of others ordered immediate shifting of the invigilators concerned from the room where the use of unfair means during exams had been detected.

The BSEK controller also warned the centre superintendent that if she failed to control the use of unfair means at the centre, she could be removed immediately while the centre would be blacklisted.

The chairman and the controller visited four examination centres on Wednesday.

However, the centre superintendent of National High School, Najma Mushir, said that every effort was being made to check the malpractices during exams and the two of the reported impersonators were detected by the examination staff of the centre.

In another development, the special vigilance team of the Directorate of Private Schools headed by Dr Mansoob Hussain Siddiqui, inspected three government schools in New Karachi, while another group of members of the team visited eleven other centres and detected two more candidates using unfair means at the National High School, Gulshan-i-Iqbal, and one at the Government Boys Secondary School Jackson Bazaar.

Although the private school directorate's team maintained that primary facilities and security arrangements were found at all the centres they visited on Wednesday, candidates and examination staffs complained about power outages at schools located in Orangi Town, Federal B Area, Liaquatabad, North Karachi, Landhi, Baldia Town and Nazimabad.

BSEK performance questioned
Cheating was rampant at many centres, including those functioning in the vicinity of the BSEK, said a couple of teachers and also questioned the performance of the BSEK centre specific vigilance officers as well.

A couple of centre superintendents requesting anonymity expressed their resentments over the way the special raiding teams rushed to the examination centres and exchanged words with the examination staff.

"Some times they pass remarks that have nothing to do with the examination duties or academic activities, but only to provoke the teachers and cause embarrassment," the teachers claimed. Dawn

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Bahria varsity evacuated over bomb hoax
Karachi: A bomb hoax on Wednesday instigated an emergency drill for bomb disposal squad (BDS), volunteers of different organisations and Sharah-e-Faisal police who rushed to the Bahria University for a search and rescue operation.

According to detail, a hoax call was received by the university administration threatening of a bomb present within the premises of the university.

The call spread panic while the administration responded immediately, evacuating the multi-storied building within a short span of time.

Bomb disposal squad rushed to the scene and cleared the building after a through sweeping.

DSP Al-Falah Shakeel Awan said although the BDS cleared the place, the Naval Intelligence has initiated an investigation of its own to reach the perpetrator. Daily times

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UK visa seekers must apply online from May 1
Karachi: The United Kingdom has announced that it will be obligatory for all Pakistani applicants and their dependants seeking a British visa to use its online visa service with effect from May 1.

"From May 1, 2012, all applicants and their dependants who are applying for a UK visa must use the online service to fill in their visa application forms," said a senior official of the United Kingdom Border Agency (UKBA) at a media briefing held at the British Deputy High Commission here on Wednesday.

She made it clear that from May 1 the UKBA would no longer accept manually completed paper application forms.The advantages of online applications were stated to be a reduction in waiting time at the visa application centre and the ability for relatives to complete the form online. The move is said to be part of the Border Agency's new global changes to the immigration rules applying for a visa to work or study in the UK.

Speaking to Geo News after the briefing, UKBA regional director Mandy Ivemy said that the online service for applying for work or study visas (points-based applications) began on April 6 in Pakistan. She said: "Acquiring a British visa will take three weeks, which is less time than it takes to get a Pakistani visa."

In the next three years, she said, the business community would be offered the facility of making online payment and appointment for a UK visa. The service will be aimed at expediting the acquisition of a British visa.

Applicants who have visited the UK in the past two years would now be able to get a visa in two working days, Ivemy said, adding that applicants under this category would be required to pay Rs8,400 apart from the visa fee.

"Pakistan is the fifth largest recipient of UK visas, and 1.4 millions journeys are made between the two countries in a year."Ivemy said that Pakistan topped the list of countries with the largest number of illegal immigrant in Britain, and that 4,200 such cases were detected through visa applications. While some of the illegal immigrants were banned for life, others were barred from applying for a British visa for 10 years, she noted.

A well-coordinated strategy was being drawn up to check the entry of illegal immigrants into the UK, she said.When asked if her country were doing anything to stop British nationals from travelling to Pakistan in order to get training from militants in the country's trial areas, the UKBA agency official stated that Britain had made its procedures stringent to check any such development.

Commenting on the proposed changes last week, British High Commission Adam Thomson had said: "These changes to our visa systems are good for the British people and good for Pakistan. Our relationship is too important to allow fraudulent behaviour to tarnish genuine travellers.

"We are working hard to further improve the level of customer service offered to Pakistanis wishing to visit, work or study in the UK, including an online applications system and a new priority visa service."He had said: "By improving customer services and clamping down on visa abuse, we are protecting genuine travellers to the UK."

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MPhil, PhD admissions at KU
Karachi: The forms for the admission to MS, MPhil and PhD programmes can be downloaded from the official website of Karachi University (www.uok.edu.pk).

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Pirated OUP books confiscated
Karachi: Based on a tip-off pertaining to the sale of pirated Oxford University Press (OUP) books, police on Wednesday conducted raids on two bookshops, the Best Mehmood Book Bank in Gulistan-e-Jauhar, and the Altaf Book Centre, North Karachi, according to an OUP Press release.

The proprietors were caught red-handed selling pirated editions.A total of 276 pirated books were confiscated at the Best Mehmood Book Bank while 905 pirated versions were held at the Altaf Book Centre.

An FIR was filed against both the concerns for violation of Pakistan's copyright laws.Such infringements of copyright laws, apart from causing heavy financial losses to the publishing industry, also dupe the parents into purchasing sub-standard books for their children. The news

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DUHS to honour members of Oscar winning team
Karachi: Dow University of Health Sciences (DUHS) will honour Dow Alumni Dr Mohammad Ali Jawwad, the plastic surgeon who reconstructed faces of the victims of acid burn in the country and turned to be the motivation behind first Oscar winning film for the country. Gold medal and lifetime achievement awards will be conferred upon Dr Jawwad, Sharmeen Obaid Chinoy and other members of the Oscar winning team at a ceremony on Thursday (today), said DUHS spokesman on Wednesday. app

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Updated: 12 April, 2014
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