University of Health Sciences status
UHS international status under scrutiny
Lahore, Dec 31: The status of the University of Health Sciences (UHS) at
international level is under scrutiny after Iran's snub against the backdrop of
the Fatima Jinnah Medical College's affiliation with this nascent medical
The Consulate General of the Islamic Republic of Iran in
Lahore, on the complaint of Iranian students studying in the Fatima Jinnah
Medical College (FJMC), has voiced students' concern over the college's
affiliation with the UHS who feel that the change of affiliation (from the
Punjab University to UHS) may affect their education in Pakistan.
letter written to FJMC Principal Prof Abdul Majid Chaudhry, Consul General of
Iran Saeid Kharazi has, however, said that they have sent all necessary
documents to the Ministry of Health, Treatment and Medical Education of the
Islamic Republic of Iran for recognition of the UHS where the case is still
It has also been learnt that the Punjab University (PU),
on the request of FJMC principal, has refused to hand over the examination
record of the FJMC to the UHS. Besides, the PU had also been conducting final
professional examination of the FJMC students after the Punjab Health
Department's notification, dated November 26, 2009, of FJMC's affiliation with
the UHS, disaffiliating it from the PU.
The old graduates,
administration, faculty and students of this all-female medical college, founded
by Quaid-e-Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah and named after his sister Fatima Jinnah,
were shocked over the development.
Terming the unilateral decision an
attack on the FJMC just a day before week-long holidays (on account of Eidul
Azha), the FJMC students started their protest and boycott of classes on a daily
basis against the college affiliation with the UHS.
They said the move
would jeopardise their future due to the lack of international recognition of
The FJMC students' protests reminded of the agitation by
students of all medical/dental colleges of Punjab at the time of their
institutions' affiliation with the newly-established UHS in 2003 but eventually
all the institutions remained affiliated with the UHS except FJMC and King
Edward Medical College.
The students condemned the FJMC's downgrading
while quoting a website (www.4icu.org) where the PU was ranked 933rd against the
UHS standing at 6,563 in the international ranking of colleges and universities
of the world. They said the FJMC, which was accommodating students not only from
Pakistan but from 23 countries, was now facing desertion by the foreign students
including Iran, UAE and Jordan.
The students had also pointed numerous
complaints of anomalies in the examinations conducted by the UHS including
setting of out-of-course papers of various professionals and entrance tests.
They were also concerned that the continuous protests and boycott of classes was
badly affecting their studies and they might lose a precious year in the
process. Therefore, they demanded to immediate restoration of the FJMC's
affiliation with the PU and later upgrade of the college as a first women
medical university in the country.
A faculty member of FJMC said: “If, at
all, the Punjab government had to go for change of affiliation, it should have
been done for the fresh students admitted in the MBBS Part-I of the session
2009-10, otherwise, it would spoil degrees (examinations conducted by two
separate universities) of the students in the midst of their
On the other hand, according to senior professors, the UHS
also failed to project itself as a medical university in its true spirit within
the country and is being tagged as a mere 'examination body' since its
establishment in 2002.
Prof Dr Mahmood Ali Malik, the former principal of
KEMC and Allama Iqbal Medical Collge, also pointed out in an article “The main
function of a university remains teaching and research whereas the UHS only
thrives on its examinations, which is not the primary function of a university.“
He supported his argument by writing that the UHS consisted of only four
non-functional professors in comparison with the faculty of 42 professors and
more than 100 associate/assistant professors at the KEMU. He advocated a
university status for the FJMC, Lahore, and the Nishtar Medical College,
The Punjab government's decision to affiliate the FJMC with the
UHS also dealt a severe blow to the efforts to upgrade the college to a first
all-female medical university in the country.
The students of the FJMC
also regretted the fact that Chief Minister Mian Shahbaz Sharif had not listened
to their grievances despite an official request through an application signed by
not less than 1,300 students of the college.
“Since the chief minister is
not approachable, the female students of FJMC are forced to fight for their
rights on the roads and become an object of harassment,“ regretted an old
graduate/member of the Association of Fatima Jinnah Old Graduates (AFJOG) and
senior faculty member of the FJMC.
However, the chief minister formed a
five-member committee to listen to the students' point of view on the issue of
FJMC's affiliation with the UHS and submit its recommendations within five
The students, who from the start doubted impartiality of the
committee on the basis of some members' stakes in private sector, claimed the
behaviour of the committee members was extremely non-serious and they showed
complete distrust over committee's proposal to accept the FJMC's affiliation
with the UHS only to be granted a university status to their college in due
process of time. They also criticised the role of FJMC principal also for having
stakes in private sector, who they believed, was only interested to become
vice-chancellor after FJMC's elevation to a university status.
contacted, UHS Vice-Chancellor Prof Dr Hussain Mubashar Malik, while vehemently
rejecting students' impression vis-‡-vis international recognition, claimed that
the UHS had established recognition and linkages with all countries including
the USA, the UK, France, Germany and China. “The UHS is a World Health
Organisation recognised university,“ he said.
While showing Consul
General of Iran, Saeid Kharazi' correspondence with the UHS, he said the UHS was
also in the process of signing an agreement of cooperation with Iran and its
universities. However, he said that as many as 116 foreign students, including
those from Iran, were also studying in other medical colleges affiliated with
the UHS. Therefore, he said, the concern over the UHS' lack of recognition in
Iran was unfounded, saying that the university did not have to earn recognition
of a country, whose citizen was admitted in its affiliated medical
Mr Malik also denied the impression that the UHS was only an
examination body, saying the university was producing PhDs and MPhil graduates
in medical sciences, while research articles were regularly appearing in
renowned medical journals of the world.
When asked about the transfer of
FJMC's examination record from the PU, he said the UHS would seek transfer of
examination record in a systematic manner at an appropriate time. Until then, he
said, the PU would hold all scheduled examinations of the FJMC students in order
to save them from any inconvenience.
PU Registrar Prof Dr Muhammad Naeem
and Controller of Examinations Dr Zahid Karim said that they would transfer the
FJMC's examination record to the UHS as per the government's advice in this
regard. “At present, the MBBS final year examination of FJMC is being held,“ Dr
Zahid Karim said.
FJMC Principal Prof Dr Abdul Majeed Chaudhry said the
committee had proposed to award degree awarding status to the FJMC. In the
meantime, he said, the PU would conduct annual MBBS final professional
examination followed by supplementary examinations of all professionals within
40 days of their annual examinations.
When contacted, MPA Dr Asad Ashraf,
chairman of the committee, said the committee had proposed grant of university
status to the FJMC in due process of time. “Till the time the FJMC completes its
spadework to earn a university charter, it will remain affiliated with the UHS,“
He also alleged that some political elements with vested
interests like the Insaf Students Federation (ISF) and a few faculty members
were inciting students to protest against the FJMC's affiliation with the UHS.
However, he agreed with the opinion that the UHS needed to improve its academic
and research activities in order to do away with the impression of being an
examination body. “The examination is just one function of a university,“ he
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PU awarded PhD degrees
Lahore: The Punjab University awarded PhD degrees to nine scholars on
Wednesday. According to a press release here, the scholars are Raheela Sadiq,
Fakhra Sultana, Abdul Basit Khan, Altaf Hussain, Muhammad Daud, Muhammad Akram,
Tariq Riaz, Maria Hussain and Iftikhar Ahmad.
Raheela Sadiq, the daughter
of Mirza Muhammad Sadiq, has been awarded a PhD degree in Arabic after approval
of her research thesis “The Evolution of Arabic Rhetoric in the Sub Continent.“
She completed her thesis under the supervision of Punjab University Department
of Arabic Prof Dr Muhammad Qamar Ali. Fakhra Sultana, D/o Muhammad Shafi, has
been awarded a PhD degree in Punjabi after approval of her research thesis “The
Development of Short Story in Punjabi Language (Research Review).“
her thesis under the supervision of Punjab University Department of Punjabi
Chairman Prof Dr Asmatullah Zahid. Abdul Basit, the son of Malik Tahir Rasool,
has been awarded a PhD degree in Islamic Studies after approval of his research
thesis “Contemporary Ijtihadi Issues and Urdu Fiqhi Literature a Comparative
Research Study.“ He completed his thesis under the supervision of Punjab
University Department of Islamic Studies Dr Mumtaz Ahmad Salik.
Hussain, S/o Muhammad Bukhsh, has been awarded a PhD degree in the subject of
Islamic Studies after approval of his research thesis “Practical Forms of Ijma
in the Present Age.“ He completed his thesis under the supervision of Punjab
University Department of Islamic Studies Chairman Prof Dr Shabbir Ahmad
Mansoori. Muhammad Daud, S/o Ghulam Hussain, has been awarded a PhD degree in
the subject of Chemistry after approval of his research thesis “Use of Various
Plants as Biomonitors to Estimate Atmosphere Pollution.“ He completed his thesis
under the supervision of Punjab University Pro Vice-Chancellor Prof Dr Jamil
Muhammad Akram, S/o Shafi Muhammad, has been awarded a
PhD degree in High Energy Physics after approval of his thesis “Vacuum
Standardization for High Energy Particle System.“
He completed his thesis
under the supervision of Punjab University Centre for High Energy Physics
Director Prof Dr Haris Rashid while Dr A Q Khan Research Laboratories,
Rawalpindi, Principal Scientific Officer Dr Muhammad Maqsood was his
Tariq Riaz, S/o Riaz Hussain Shah, has been awarded a PhD
degree in Mycology and Plant Pathology after approval of his thesis
“Investigation and Management of Fungal Constraints on Gladiolus.“
completed his thesis under the supervision of Punjab University Institute of
Mycology and Plant Pathology Dr Salik Nawaz Khan.
Maria Hussain, D/o Arif
Hussain, has been awarded a PhD degree in Mathematics after approval of her
research thesis “Data Visualization Using Spline Functions.“ She completed her
thesis under the supervision of Punjab University Department of Mathematics Prof
Dr Malik Zawwar Hussain. Iftikhar Ahmad, S/o Bashir Ahmad, has been awarded a
PhD degree in Earth and Environmental Sciences after approval of his research
thesis “Optimal Control of Multiple Reservoirs System under Water Scarcity.“ He
completed his thesis under the supervision of Punjab University Institute of
Geology Director Prof Dr Nasir Ahmad.
Meanwhile, PU awarded HEC Outstanding Research Award to Prof Dr Muhammad
Sharif under the category of Best Research Paper Award. He has also been awarded Pakistan Academy of
Sciences Gold Medal in Mathematics for his research.
A press release here
on Wednesday said that Dr Sharif has already been awarded Izaz-e-Fazeelat and
Tamgha-e-Imtiaz by the Pakistan government during 2007 and 2008 respectively.
He was also awarded Best University Teacher Award by HEC during 2008. He
has worked on research in general relativity.
He has been supervising
number of MPhil/PhD students and has helped produce 22 MPhil and four PhD
scholars. He has published more than 100 research papers in journals with
non-zero impact factor and participated and delivered over 41 seminars in
different international and national conferences.
He has been a member
of different International societies and acting as a referee for different
PU Vice-Chancellor Prof Dr Mujahid Kamran has
felicitated Dr Sharif terming his achievements as “excellent and marvellous“.
He said mathematics was the mother of all sciences.
The VC also
congratulated chairman of Mathematics Department, Prof Dr Shahid Siddiqui, and
all faculty members. Prof Kamran said his administration was encouraging all
faculty members to focus on research and all-out support was being extended to
teachers and research scholars in this regard. The news
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KC principal's supporters refused to endorse sackings
Lahore: At least 24 of Kinnaird College's senior faculty members have refused to
support the sacking of seven of their colleagues by KC Principal Dr Bernadette
Louis, it has been learnt.
The principal tried to pressure the
senior teachers to support the sackings, and accused them of politicising the
matter while she herself was trying to “push others into politics“, sources
said. At least 30 senior faculty members – who were considered staunch
supporters of the KC principal – met Dr Bernadette Louis to discuss the matter,
but 24 of them refused to back the decision to sack the teachers.
said Dr Bernadette Louis had convened the meeting to seek their opinion in
“justifying“ the sacking of the teachers, and did not invite those she thought
would oppose the board of governors' decision. KC Vice Principal Dr Seemi Khan
did not attend the meeting.
Those who attended the meeting include
Nasreen Pasha, Qaisra Sheikh, Dr Nadia Anjum, Nadia Mubashir, Munaza KC
Registrar Dr Naima Khursheed and others. Those sacked are Saira Malik, head of
the Political Science Department; Farukh Sohail, head of the Islamic Studies
Department; Helen Khokhar, head of the Physics Department; Shiba Syed, Head of
the Urdu Department; Asma Jamil of the Psychology Department; Zareena Rizvi of
the Urdu Department; and Sadaf Munir of the Philosophy Department. These
teachers were among 97 faculty members who objected to the appointment of the
KC's first-ever registrar, Dr Naima Khursheed.
The KC principal has also
tried to win the sympathies of the Old Association of Kinnaird Students (OAKS),
but OAKS members have said they would never support a “dictatorial move“.
Shireen Iftikhar, an OAKS member said that her association would
never accept a “dictatorial, one-sided decision“.
“We will not allow
anyone to harm KC's reputation by implementing unfair decisions,“ she said. With
classes set to resume on January 4 after the winter vacations, the sources said
the principal was trying to “engineer opinion“ to evade resistance from students
and faculty members. Students, educationists, members of the civil society and
other citizens have also been criticising the decisions made by the KC
Sajida Mir, an MPA from the ruling party, also said that the
decision to sack the teachers was “dictatorial“. She said the KC principal's
decision was totally unfair. Daily times
KC teachers plea
Lahore: Lahore High Court (LHC) Chief Justice Khwaja Muhammad Sharif
stayed repatriation orders of the two Kinnaird College for Women teachers on
Wednesday and sought comments from the college's principal and the Higher
Education Department secretary.
Kinnaird College teachers Farrukh Sohail
and D Helen Khokhar have challenged their repatriation to the Higher Education
Department. Principal Dr Bernadette L Dean through a letter on Dec 23 sent these
teachers to the Higher Education Department.
submitted that their clients had been serving as regular faculty members at the
college for a long time. They said the Punjab Higher Education Department asked
the principal on Dec 3 not to transfer any regular or contract employee.
But, they said, the principal in sheer disregard to the orders issued
transfer/repatriation orders of the petitioners and two other teachers on Dec 23
surrendering their services to the Higher Education Department.
say that the action of the principal was also against the Punjab Kinnaird
College for Women Ordinance, 2002.
Counsels added the action of the
principal was based on mala fide intention as the petitioners had filed a
complaint before the board of governor of the college against the principal.
They requested the court to declare the repatriation orders illegal and suspend
the operation of impugned order till the final decision of the petitions.
The chief justice suspended the impugned order and asked the respondents
to submit comments on Jan 8. Dawn
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Madaris demanded status of Secondary Board
Lahore: A draft legislation regarding the ambitious plan of
bringing madaris into the mainstream of education has been sent to the
Provincial Law Division.
The Punjab Education department earlier formulated a
draft in consultation with the madaris executives and Punjab Auqaf and Religious
Affairs department. A series of meeting took place before finalisation of the
draft. However, it has been delayed for an inordinate period as earlier
visualised because of the stubborn attitude of functionaries of madaris.
administrators of five boards of madaris representing Tanzimul Madaris
(Brailvi), Wafaqul Madaris (Deobandi), Wafaqul Madaris (Shia), Waffaqul Madaris
Salphia Ahle Hadith and Rabitatul Madaris (Jamaat-e-Islami) insisted to give
them the status of secondary Board separately to conduct examination by
themselves and issue certificates equivalent to Matriculation.
government insisted that there should be one secondary board of all the wafaqul
madaras representing all sects to be run by the state.
The government had
offered the madaris hitherto issuing their own 'sanad' of religious education,
that their students would read the additional subjects of Mathematics, English
and Pakistan Studies at their madaris and appear in the secondary Board
examination to get secondary school certificate (Matric) equivalent to the Board
of Intermediate & Secondary Education for matriculation examination to get
them in the main stream of education.
The five Wafaqul Madris however, insisted
to occupy the status of Board but to be governed by madaris and the government
jointly. The madaris also did not agree on any govt role in the Board. The nation
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Professional Development Day
Lahore: The Government College University, Lahore, Career Guidance and
Placement Centre (GCU GCPC) Wednesday organised 'On-Campus Professional
Development Day' in collaboration with the US Consulate, Lahore and the United
States Educational Foundation in Pakistan (USEFP).
According to a press
release, training workshops, presentation sessions and other activities were
held to inform students about new techniques and professional and higher
A large number of students of BA/BSc (Hons)
final year took part in training workshops and presentation sessions.
Consulate Education Adviser Ms Lubna held a training workshop on plagiarism and
integrity and highlighted importance of creativity and productivity. She said
that most students cheated and indulged in plagiarism to get good grades in
exams. She said students did not become Allama Muhammad Iqbal or Professor Dr
Abdus Salam because of their high grades but due to their creativity and
learning. She also told students how to avoid plagiarism during
USEFP Senior Adviser Ms Mehreen Noon told students about
writing personal statement for getting admissions to foreign universities. She
said that the personal statement should not contain academic and professional
records as they were already evident from transcripts and other certificates.
“The personal statement should be about your character development,“ she said.
Mehreen Noon also told the students that they did not need to portrait
themselves as perfect students and human beings. “The admission committees
prefer the people who are also honest towards their weaknesses,“ she added. She
also told students about tips to make personal statement interesting to
GCU Placement Officer M Waqar Ahmad trained students in resume
writing which he believed to be the most important for students entering
professional life. He informed the students about standard formats of resume
writing. He also discussed various mistakes which people usually made in
preparing their resumes.
USEFP Education Adviser Ms Rukhsana Monnoo gave
presentation on Fulbright Scholarship.
In reply to questions about visas
for Fulbright Scholarship winners, she said the USEFP assisted students in
getting visas but the Foundation did not guarantee it. “It depends on your
interview with the visa officer,“ she added. She told the students about the
priority fields for Fulbright Scholarship which included education management,
health and journalism. Rukhsana said that it was obligatory for Fulbright
Scholarship holders to come back and serve their country for at least two years.
US Consulate Public Affairs Officer Jamie Dragon delivered a lecture on the
education in United States and told students about study opportunities in the
He informed the students how to select a better university for
higher education in their relative filed. He said there were 623,000 foreign
students in the US in 2008 out of which 5,300 were Pakistanis.
students individually interacted with the resource persons and took guidance
from them in their relevant fields.
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Tevta banned postings
Lahore: Technical Education and Vocational Training Authority
(Tevta), after the approval of Chief Minister Punjab Muhammad Shahbaz Sharif,
has imposed a ban on all types of transfers/postings till June 30, 2010, with
According to a press release on Wednesday, the Tevta spokesman
said transfers/postings on administrative grounds and upon promotion would be
exempted from the ban.
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Lahore: Punjab Public Service Commission (PPSC), on Wednesday,
recommended 78 candidates for appointment on 80 posts of Computer Operator
(BS-12) in the Finance Department/Punjab Treasuries Establishment.
are still lying vacant. Besides, PPSC also recommended two candidates, Arshad
Ali and Abdul Hafeez, for appointment to the posts of District Zakat Officer
(BS-17) in the Zakat & Ushr Department.
The PPSC also recommended a
candidate, Asif Ali, for appointment to the post of Assistant Secretary
(E&L) BS-17 in the Zakat & Ushr Department. The results can be seen on
Commission's website www.ppsc.gop.pk. The news
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