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PMC Ahmedi students & traders strike

PMC students: traders stick to their call
Faisalabad, July 04, 2008: Most shopkeepers in the city district observed a shutter-down strike on Thursday to press the authorities for registration of a case against the Ahmedi students who had been rusticated from the Punjab Medical College.

The strike call was given by the Anjuman-i-Tajran city and clerics of different sects. All the main markets, including Clock Tower bazaars, remained closed the whole day through.

Anjuman president Shahid Razzaq Sakka and secretary-general Mahmood Alam said they were observing strike as a last resort as the local administration and police had failed to register a case against the Ahmedi students found guilty of "preaching their faith and removing the posters of rival sects".

The successful strike in the district, they said, indicated that people wanted action against the Ahmedi students.

Sources said Senior Minister Raja Riaz, the DCO and the DIG police did not appear for negotiations with the traders, though they had fixed a meeting with them at 11am at the Jamia Masjid.

They said officials on Wednesday night tried their level best to convince the traders of cancellation of the strike call, but the latter remained adamant.

During the course of speeches, many traders and clerics of different sects demanded a case against the Ahmedi students under sections 295 and 298 of PPC. They passed a resolution through which they stressed that "all those non-Muslims enjoying high ranks in any department must be removed immediately".

A traders' action committee meeting has been convened for Sunday to plan a future strategy. Dawn

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International membership awarded to UVAS
Lahore: International Association of Universities (IAU), France, has awarded membership to the University of Veterinary and Animal Sciences (UVAS) Lahore.

Admitting the UVAS as a member, the IAU observed that the association had found UVAS credentials up to the standards set for international universities for its membership. Founded in 1950 under the aegis of Unesco, the IAU is an international organisation based in Paris, France.

It is a membership organization bringing together 600 universities, institutions of higher education and national and regional associations of universities from 150 countries.

The association provides its members and higher education stakeholders a global meeting forum and various services such as information and analysis on latest developments in higher education, advocacy of higher education institutions' views and opportunities to build partnerships and networks between higher education institutions worldwide as well as with various international, regional and national bodies. On getting the IAU membership, UVAS Vice Chancellor Prof Dr Muhammad Nawaz said it was an honour that the UVAS standards of education, research and training were compatible with international universities and other seats of learning of higher education.

Meanwhile, Directorate of Research of the UVAS arranged a seminar on "North American Veterinary Licensing Exam (NAVLE) in the seminar room. Dr Ghulam Abbas, a veterinary practitioner in the United States of America, was the guest speaker. He spoke about the exam, how to prepare for it and what were the shortcomings in Pakistani graduates for getting through this exam. DVM final year students attended the seminar which ended after a question and answer session. The News

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Unavailability of teachers: '30 govt schools non-functional in Pindi district for years'
Rawalpindi: Around 30 government schools across the Rawalpindi district are either closed or nonfunctional due to unavailability of teachers.

Sources in the district education department said that most of such schools, especially those imparting primary education, were located in remote areas of Kahuta, Gujar Khan, Kotli Sattian and Murree, and had been without teachers for the last many years.

Executive District Officer (Education) Chaudhry Yousaf denied shortage of teachers in government schools. "These schools might have been short of teachers in the past but this is certainly not the case for now, especially after their merger with others," he said on Thursday.

The sources said that elementary schools of Kurli, Garmala, Thati Syedan, Ghangar, Aliot, Lona, Gatal, Baghar Sharif and Masi Gala in Kahuta tehsil had been closed for the last three years.

Likewise, primary schools of Kontarila, Mohra Mari, Nathial Kiyal, Galyari Gogri, Dhoke Kharkan and Miana Dalyal in Gujar Khan Ward-II, those of Harnali Syedan Markaz Chontra, Malokal and Markaz Sadar Baroni in Rawalpindi tehsil, those of Bhirbarian, Kandowal, Galyal, Kamra, Pind Bharowatt, Bamal Hari, Basinda, Nimb Dara, Chapari Pinola and Baigal in Kotli Sattian and those of Karhai, Puli Liskho Tara and Kohiti in Murree are also nonfunctional, they said.

Statistics show that there are 224 primary schools for girls and 206 for boys in Rawalpindi tehsil, 276 for girls and 184 boys in Gujar Khan, 112 for boys and 108 for girls in Murree, 101 for girls and 70 for boys in Kalar Syedan, 110 for girls and 84 for boys Kahuta, 48 for boys and 31 for girls in Taxila and 83 for girls and 67 for boys in Kotli Sattian.

They also say that Rawalpindi tehsil has 45 middle schools for girls and 36 for boys, Gujar Khan 49 for girls and 31 for boys, Murree 12 for girls and 13 for boys, Kalar Syedan 17 for girls and 11 for boys, Kahuta 14 for boys and nine for girls, Taxila nine for boys and five for girls and Kotli Sattian 11 for girls and nine for boys.

It's learnt that parents prefer not to send their children to these schools under current circumstances.

District Education Officer (Elementary-Female) Naseem Altaf said that unavailability of qualified women in remote areas forced the Education Department to hire teachers from urban areas for appointment at far-away girls' schools.

She, however, said teachers quit job sooner or later due to the schools' remoteness and unavailability of facilities. She said that ban on recruitment had also made things worse on this count.

The DEO said that the department should lower the criteria for teachers from BA/BEd to FSc/FA. She also demanded better salary and conveyance allowance for the teachers appointed at government schools in remote areas. Daily Times

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