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Islamic Studies in new education policy | GIK convocation

No changes in Islamic Studies course in new education policy
Rawalpinid, June 03: The government will not make any changes in Islamic studies courses in new education policy to be announced soon taking all the four chief ministers on the board, said Federal Minister for Education Mir Hazar Khan Bijarani on Tuesday.

Bijarani stated this while talking to newsmen after certificate distribution ceremony of National Vocational and Technical Education Commission (NAVTEC) at Fatima Jinnah Women University (FJWU), Rawalpindi.

"The new education policy would be aimed at making the education system progressive and vibrant to meet the qualitative and quantitative requirements of the country," he said.

He said draft of new education policy had been prepared and dispatched to four chief ministers for their input. He said they wanted to make the education system progressive and liberal to meet the challenges of 21st century.

Troubled areas: Replying to a question, he said the government had not planned separate education policy for troubled areas in NWFP. He said the government had started schools at the camps set up for internally displaced persons (IDPs) in Mardan and other areas.

Bijarani said the federal government was in contact with provincial government to upgrade the students of restive areas to next classes for saving their academic year. He said the government was running two shifts of schools in IDPs camps and providing free books and bags to the students.

Earlier, addressing at the ceremony, the minister appreciated the students and lauded the efforts of the FJWU for extending support in accomplishing the task of skill development through quality training. He appreciated the university for providing practical training to the females of the society in collaboration with NAVTEC.

FJWU Vice Chancellor (VC) Prof Dr Saeeda Asadullah Khan said the training courses had been designed to meet the shortage of skilled labour in the country. She said the university had always taken different initiatives for socio economic development.

NAVTEC Chairman Adnan Khawaja said the professional training would help youth in earning their livelihood and sustained economic growth of the country. He said FJWU and NAVTEC collaboration would continue in future.

The minister awarded certificates to the participants and position-holders of the courses in various technical disciplines. The FJWU and NAVTEC jointly organised the courses to prepare a skilled workforce. The first batch of these courses started in September 2008. So far six batches have completed their training.

In the end, FJWU shields were awarded to the NAVTEC chairman, regional director and FJWU focal person Nighat Reza. The FJWU VC presented the university souvenir to federal minister. Daily Times


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GIK graduates urged to serve nation
Sawbi: Former NWFP chief minister and president of the Society for Promotion of Engineering Sciences and Technology in Pakistan (SOPREST) Shamsul Mulk has said youths must acquire the modern-day education to face the future challenges in a befitting manner.

Addressing the 13th convocation of the Ghulam Ishaq Khan Institute (GIKI) of Engineering Sciences and Technology here Tuesday, he said, "Youths are our future and they must work with dedication to come up to the expectations of the nation.

He urged the passed out graduates to bravely face the testing times and never compromise on their integrity and principles.Paying tributes to the founder of the institute and former president Ghulam Ishaq Khan, he said that he (late president) established a great centre of excellence, which must be preserved and availed of.

GIKI Rector Jahangir Bashir said that getting education was a must for a nation's development and progress. Among other graduates in different disciplines of engineering, 236 BS, 29 MS and 6 PhDs also received degrees in the relevant fields. The News


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81 students, teachers rescued, 37 missing
Bannu/Tank/Miramshah: Security forces rescued on Tuesday morning 81 students and teachers of the Razmak Cadet College after an exchange of fire with militants in Garyom area of North Waziristan, according to a senior government official. But, 35 students and two teachers are still missing.

There were conflicting reports about the number of students and teaching staff kidnapped by the Taliban in Bakkakhel of the Bannu Frontier Region when they were going home on Monday.

Bannu police put the number at 540, basing their claim on statements by students and teachers who had managed to escape the militants'

dragnet. But a senior official of the tribal administration said that 300 students and 50 teachers and members of their families had left the college.

"This confusion was because of the unknown number of family members who were accompanying the faculty members. Our guess is that the total number was 400 plus," Additional Chief Secretary of Fata Habibullah Khan said.

He said that in the melee, many cadets and teachers had managed to escape and reach home. "It took us the whole day to call homes and try to locate individuals in Peshawar, Bannu and other places. Many of them managed to reach home on their own."

Mr Habibullah said that 37 people remained unaccounted for and the administration believed they were held somewhere on the border between North and South Waziristan. "We think that they have not yet been taken to Baitullah Mehsud in South Waziristan," he added.

The authorities have asked tribal elders in Janikhel, Bakkakhel and North Waziristan to hold talks with the militants and ensure early recovery of the hostages.

Mr Habibullah said the government had also warned of action under the Frontier Crimes Regulation against Janikhel and Bakkakhel tribes if they failed to get the students and teachers freed.

Bannu Commissioner Sardar Abbas told reporters that the recovered students and teachers, including principal Javeed Iqbal, had been brought to Bannu by a helicopter and handed over to their parents and relatives.

(According to AFP, Mr Abbas said that troops intercepted the gunmen before dawn at a military checkpost, about 20km from the college.

"There was an exchange of fire after which the militants fled. All students and teaching staff members were rescued," he said.

But the principal of the college said a handful of students remained unaccounted for. It was unclear whether they were in Taliban hands or had escaped elsewhere in the region.)

A senior security official said that intelligence and intercepts of militants' phone conversations prompted a high-alert on the road used by the militants to transport the hostages.

According to a student, security forces fired at the militants escorting the abducted persons in Garyom at about 3.30am.

"The firing continued for some time. One of the shells hit a militant vehicle and we took cover behind a rock. One militant was hit by a bullet and fell. We ran towards the military fort, raised our hands and shouted we are the cadets," Ataul Haq, a student of grade-10 said.

He said the Taliban continued to lurk around the fort and demanded that the cadets be handed over to them, but the army refused. He said the militants had managed to take two vehicles carrying the cadets through the blockade.

A senior paramilitary official said that security forces had blocked the escape routes by attacking the militants from the front and the rear.

However, Brig Zahid Abdullah, who led the rescue operation, told reporters in Bannu that 124 cadets and eight teachers had been rescued in a joint operation by the army and Shawal Rifles in Kakarwam area of Razmak subdivision. No one was injured in the operation. Seven vehicles were seized. Dawn


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QAU musical night: Malku, Jassi enthral students at Open Air Theatre
Islamabad: The students of Quaid-e-Azam University (QAU) organised a musical night at the Open Air Theatre, Shakarparian, on Monday.

The Punjab Students Council (PSC) organised the colourful event. The students of QAU and other educational institutions of the capital thronged the venue to enjoy the musical night.

Malku and Jassi Singh Lyalpuria, the two popular Punjabi singers, performed in the musical night. Malku sang Punjabi, Pashto, Siraiki and Baluchi songs to entertain students from the four provinces of the country attending the event. The students said that they enjoyed the event and such cultural and musical programmes should be regularly organised on campuses.

Cultural exchange: Before the musical night formally started, a cultural exchange event took place to celebrate the cultural diversity at QAU. Speaking on the occasion, Tayyab Sultan Chaudhry, the PSC general secretary said being Pakistanis they were proud of their cultural heritage and cultural diversity. He said the students from all the four provinces and the Northern Areas were studying at QAU. He said provincial harmony could be achieved by developing tolerance for other cultures and ethnicities. He said the national interests of Pakistan were more important than the interests of any ethnic group or province. PSC Chairman Asif Nasim Satti, Senior Vice Chairman Zahid Warraich and Vice Chairman Rana Masood also expressed their views on this occasion.

National Assembly members Dr Tariq Fazal Chaudhry and Dr Darshan also attended the musical night. Speaking on the occasion, Chaudhry said the students from all the four provinces of the country should unite to work for the prosperity and development of Pakistan. Mian Faisal said the Punjab had always played the role of a big brother. Daily Times


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Medals conferred on top 10 scientists
Islamabad: A ceremony to confer medals on top 10 scientists of the country was held at the auditorium of Pakistan Academy of Sciences here on Tuesday.

Science and Technology Minister Azam Khan Swati conferred the President's Medal for Technology on them at the ceremony that was attended by a large of scientists, including those who came to witness the event from outside the federal capital.

The scientists said the event was reflective of the country's resolve to use science and technology as a tool for achieving sustained national growth.

Mr Swati on the occasion said it was a critical time for Pakistan and that the country's scientists must rise to make fruitful contribution to creation of more resources and manpower for the development of knowledge and to speed up the growth of science and technology to enhance economic development.

"Promotion of science and technology is essential to help create enlightened society," said the minister. Dr Ghulam Habib was awarded the medal for upgrading nutrition value of poor feed and developing supplementary strategies for increasing milk in small scale livestock farming.

Dr Azhar Mehmood was given the medal for making 'an exciting discovery' in the field of corrosion science and non-material and Dr Muhammad Javaid Iqbal for indigenously developing more than 20 high purity chemicals of strategic and industrial significance in defence which led to achieving self-reliance and import substitution.

Dr Muhammad Sarwar Khan, who synthesised various genes to develop bio-safe transgenic plants as well genes of agronomic importance, was also awarded the medal.

Professor Dr Najma Sultana was given the medal for developing new methods for quality control of drugs as well as improved curricula in pharmacy; Professor Dr Ahmad Khalid for "placing Pakistan on the map of biological technology for minerals and fossil fuels as well as for establishing bio-technology for minerals and fossil fuels" and Dr Muhammad Akhtar Kassi who mapped and described several new aspects of rock formation of high commercial value in Balochistan.

Professor Dr Khan Bahadur Marwat was awarded the medal for registering the Ghanavi-98 seeds of wheat and maize and Muhammad Akhtar for designing and fabricating first ever angle indigenous x-ray as well as designing mechanical parts, electronic controls, computer inter-facing and software for control and data acquisition and also for fabricating the equipments indigenously at Pinstech.

Professor Dr Zafar Iqbal was awarded the medal as he developed hydatid disease control package as well as bioclimatograph and anthelmintic techniques.

Earlier, S & T Secretary Kashif Murtaza informed the audience that the awards for technology were instituted in 2007 and announced by the President on August 14 and conferred on March 23. Dawn


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