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Community development schools

Issuance of exam forms to community development schools
Rawalpindi, March 02: Justice Asad Munir of the Lahore High Court (LHC), Rawalpindi Bench, Monday directed the Board of Intermediate and Secondary Education (BISE), Rawalpindi, to issue examination forms of the Secondary School Certificate (SSC) and Higher Secondary School Certificate (HSSC) to community development schools (CDSs).

The court directed the community development schools to submit Rs12,000 as endowment fund to the BISE, Rawalpindi.

Naveed Qureshi and Tauqeer Ahmad, principals of the Government High School (Pindori Jabbar) and Government High School for Boys (Kohinoor), had challenged the BISE decision to charge affiliation fee, inspection fee and endowment fund from the community development schools. The two principals had also challenged the BISE decision to treat the community development schools as private.

The petitioners stated that the government in an effort to promote education in far-flung areas took an initiative to establish the community development schools under the community participation programme. It was through this scheme that any person either a government school teacher or a private person could establish a community development school in the government owned school building. Through an agreement, it was settled that the person running a community development school would charge Rs300 per student to impart education.

As per agreement, the said person was supposed to pay to the BISE 10% of the total income and 5% maintenance fee. The person was also responsible to share utility bills.

The BISE had written to all persons running community development schools and according to these letters, all these persons were subject to pay Rs95,000 to the BISE as affiliation fee, Rs8,000 as inspection fee and endowment fund.

Nominating Secretary Education Punjab, Higher Education Punjab, Director Community Participation Punjab, Executive District Officer (EDO) Education Rawalpindi, Chairman BISE and Secretary BlSE, the petitioners had prayed to the court not to charge these funds from the community development schools as there was no mention of it in the agreements that they signed with the government in 2001 and it was renewed later with the same conditions. The agreement is valid from 2009 to 2014.

The petitioners had appraised the court that their students have been regularly appearing in the BISE examination. He further prayed to the government to declare the said letter of the BISE illegal.

The petitioners had also prayed to the court to direct the BISE to issue them examination forms, which the court allowed. The court will take up the matter again on March 3. The news

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Private colleges target KMC's forensic & toxicology dept
Peshawar: A well-organised campaign launched by the vested interests against NWFP's lone state-of-the-art forensic medicine and toxicology department of the Khyber Medical College Peshawar (KMC) has once again jeopardized future of this historic medical institution and its students.

Well-placed sources at the NWFP health department said about the conspiracy reportedly being hatched by influential figures of private medical colleges to shift the well-equipped mortuary from the KMC to another public sector hospital, Hayatabad Medical Complex (HMC).

The attempt, according to the sources, was meant to deprive the KMC and its students from the vital subject of forensic medicine, which involves the medico-legal cases and autopsies. Interestingly, the department functioning at the KMC for the past 21 years and having conducted thousands of autopsies is being termed a serious threat and cause of traffic jam on the university campus.

However, very few people know about this and even senior officials of the NWFP health department were unaware of the conspiracy. A tussle between the KMC administration and owners of private medical colleges began a few months back when administrators of private medical institutions demanded access for their students to the department of forensic medicine and toxicology, particularly mortuary, of the medical college.

The KMC administration reportedly agreed but demanded Rs15,000 annual charges per student from the private medical colleges. The private medical colleges that have lured some of the teaching staff from KMC refused to pay the college and instead tried to influence its administration through former college teachers.

"It was not a big deal for the private colleges, which are heavily charging the students. They charge Rs0.8 million per student a year, but have refused to spend a small amount of Rs15, 000 on the research work," remarked an official of the provincial health department.

He said owners of private medical colleges later launched a campaign against forensic and toxicology department of the KMC. The demand for shifting of mortuary from KMC to the distant HMC first came from the then president of Peshawar University Teachers Association (PUTA), Arbab Khan Afridi, who said the facility was posing a threat to security of the university campus and creating traffic jam on Road No3.

Vice-Chancellor University of Peshawar, Prof Dr Azmat Hayat wrote to the NWFP governor and sought an early shifting of the mortuary.The governor referred the issue to NWFP health secretary, Dr Sohail Altaf, who later directed director general health and services to resolve the issue with consent of the parties concerned.

Sources at the health department said they had informed the high officials about the conspiracy against the forensic department, particularly mortuary, of the college by influential figures and its impact on this historic medical institution.

"It surprised us when the governor issued yet another letter directing us to resolve the issue on an urgent basis," an official of the health department said on condition of anonymity.

Being the lone classified department of the NWFP at KMC for toxicological and serological examinations, the department is equipped with modern facilities for specialized examination of poisoning and sexually assaulted victims.

Since 1999, the department has been recognised for forensic medicine training and now for M Phil training by the College of Physicians and Surgeons (FCPS). It has nine FCPS and four M Phil trainees and has produced thirteen fellows now serving in various institutions of the country.

When reached by telephone, NWFP health secretary, Dr Sohail Altaf said there was no question of shifting forensic department and mortuary from KMC. He said forensic department and especially mortuary was backbone of the research by the KMC students, therefore, nobody would be allowed to play with this prestigious institution.

"It is compulsory and perquisite for the graduate and postgraduate students of KMC to conduct research, especially in autopsy. Therefore we will strongly resist such an attempt. When there has been no threat because of the institution in the past 21 years, why now? The road where the mortuary is located has nothing to do with traffic of the university campus," he argued.

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International Scientific Spring
Islamabad: Effective measures are being taken to promote research activity with an aim to compete in the field of science and technology at the international level, Director General of National Centre for Physics (NCP) Dr. Hamid Saleem said on Monday.

Addressing at the opening session of weeklong International Scientific Spring 2010 here, he said, the NCP and its associated centres including National Institute of Vacuum Science & Technology (NINVAST), Nano Sciences, Experimental Physics Laboratory (EPD), Global Change Impact Study Centre (GCISC) and Centre for Earthquake Studies (CES) are working in their relevant fields to make NCP an institution of international excellence.

"To become visible as vibrant research oriented nation we need active and professional young researchers determined in development of Pakistan," he said.He said the main aim of holding this activity is to disseminate knowledge and to promote research environment at national level and to unveil the technical facilities present at NCP.

The activity would focus the core areas of physics and its related fields like Accelerator Technology, Astrophysics, Cosmology, Condensed Matter Physics, Higher Energy Physics, Laser Physics, Nano Sciences, Global Change, Earthquake Studies, Quantum Optics, Fluid Dynamics, Vacuum Sciences and Plasma Physics.

Dr. Hamid Saleem said no one could deny the importance of research in present circumstances because no nation can move in the direction of human progress and development without having an urge to probe and find out the truth. He said research has become an industry in the Western countries and they are not only making most of their resources but they are also using them in the right direction.

"Basically a research culture is only the thing in which a researcher is responsible for developing a body of principles to explain the emerging phenomena adequately and, at the same time, must suggest practical guidelines to solve the immediate problems," he said.

The activity is one of its kinds and would prove to be a fruitful platform to discuss the current and future prospects of Physics and its related fields in different avenues of life. Foreign scientists from different universities of America, Switzerland, China, South Korea and Australia are participating and will present their research papers and presentations on different field of Physics and its allied disciplines in this international activity.

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HEC-FAD programme
Islamabad: Chief of Party HEC-FAD programme Dr. John Shumaker had a video-conference with 11 partner universities. The modalities for provision of financial assistance to needy students from partner universities were finalised under the programme during the proceedings of the video-conference, said a news release issued here.

Under the programme, the technical assistance will be provided to HEC and partner universities in establishing free standing financial aid and development offices to improve services to students as they seek options for financial support. One of the major achievements of the HEC-FAD programme is the development of the first National Online Scholarship Calendar. The calendar provides students with an access to all available scholarships being offered through the HEC and HEC-FAD's partner universities.

The purpose of the Office of Student Financial Aid and Development is to assist students as they identify sources and strategies for financial assistance to assist with the application and award processes and provide comprehensive services that are responsive to their needs. As it strives to provide various forms of financial assistance as a way to increases access to higher education, the Offices of 11 partner universities and HEC will employ management systems that support transparency, efficiency and accountability to the university and its many stakeholders.

NWFP Agriculture University Peshawar, Institute of Management Sciences Peshawar, Quaid-i-Azam University, University of Arid Agriculture Rawalpindi, University of Agriculture Faisalabad, Lahore University of Management Sciences, Balochistan University of Information Technology and Management Sciences, Sindh Agriculture University Tandojam, Institute of Business Administration Karachi and Shaheed Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto Institute of Science and Technology and Institute of Business Administration Sukkur participated in the session.

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International Media Conference
Islamabad: Dr. Saqib Riaz, Professor of Mass Communication at Allama Iqbal Open University will represent Pakistan in International Media Conference going to be held on March 18 in Germany, says a press release.

The conference is organised by the International Institute of Journalism Berlin in collaboration with the German leading newspaper Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung. The conference will be held in Berlin and the State Secretary of the Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development Hans Jurgen Beerfeltz will inaugurate the conference.

The conference will be addressed by the leading journalists and media scholars of the developed and developing countries. The participants of the conference will exchange their views about the role of Media and Challenges Faced by Media in the Present Age.

The conference will focus on the emerging phenomenon of Citizen Journalism in different parts of the world. The news

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