PU Book Fair ended | 4-year honours at GCU, FCCU
PU Book Fair ended, IJT activists allowed to enter
Lahore, May 31, 2008: The Punjab University (PU) Islami Jamiat Talaba (IJT) workers on Friday
succeeded in showing their strong representation at the PU Book Fair after
having a dialogue with the administration on the last day of the event.
The three-day event began on Wednesday with restrictions on the IJT
workers to enter the event. Books on various topics were being sold on up to 50
The PU Book Fair was previously conducted by the IJT
annually, but the PU administration decided to hold the event on its own this
year. The PU administration had also announced that the IJT had nothing to do
with the event and its workers should keep themselves from this year's event.
This announcement fuelled the ongoing differences between the IJT and
the PU administration over the holding of the event.
On May 12, the
administration sealed the university for four days to stop IJT from holding the
Demands: PU IJT Media Secretary Imran Kiyani said, "The PU
administration, in the meeting, has accepted our demands and recognised us equal
partners in the event."
PRO: The PU Public Relation Officer (PRO)
Shabbir Sarwer said the PU student advisor had allowed to the IJT workers to
join the PU administration at the event.
The PRO said, "The IJT workers
are allowed to welcome their guests, but they cannot conduct any political
activity." They would not enter the book fair in groups, he
Incidents: For the first two days at the book fair, the IJT
members were not allowed to show their presence at the event.
contingents of police were deployed on the campus to make the event a success
without the IJT's involvement.
However, the IJT workers managed to enter
the campus with Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) MNA Naseer Bhutta on
Thursday and attempted to control the stage, which led to a scuffle between them
and PU officials. Bhutta said some PU faculty members had misbehaved with him.
The university officials, later, denied the MNA's claim. Some IJT activists were
also seen misbehaving with PU teachers on this occasion. The University
Students' Federation on Friday protested against the IJT workers for misbehaving
with the teachers.
Another incident happened on the third day of the
event when a PU security guard misbehaved with PU Centre for High Energy Physics
Director Prof Dr Harris Rasheed and stopped him from entering the book fair. Dr
Harris denounced the administration for the incident.
Ameer Qazi Hussain Ahmed visited the event on Friday, after the successful
dialogue between the IJT activists and the PU administration.
Rehman Shami, Bushra Rehman, Ajmal Niazi, Soaib Bin Aziz, and Shahbaz Anwar Khan
were among the other visitors.
A large number of students, teachers,
journalists, educationists, writers and people from other walks of life also
visited the event and bought books of their likings. Daily Times
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4-year honour programmes fails to dazzle GCU, FCCU students
Lahore: The Government College (GCU) students have shown apathy towards
four-year honours programme while the Forman Christian College University (FCCU)
students laud their institution for awarding them a two-year conventional
degree, learnt from students.
In November 2004, the Higher
Education Commission (HEC) asked various universities to start the four-year
honours programme. In Lahore, the GCU and FCCU had launched the programme in
Official figures showed that 648 students were enrolled in the GCU
and 1,125 got admission in FCCU in 2005. It was learnt that half of
students have left the programme. Now GCU has 300 students and only 500 students
are doing their honours at FCCU.
GCU: Strength of four-year honours
students is, Economics Department (70), History Department (21), Political
Science Department (50), English Department (20), Philosophy Department (10),
Urdu Department (15) and rest of the science departments collectively make it
Students, who were dropped out or were struck off from the GCU,
said, "Semester system is followed across the world for honours programmes, but
2005 and 2006 batches followed an annual system. Only 2007 batch has the
They said GCU lacked the capacity to continue the
honours programme policy. Qadir Dad, Zohaib Ali Khan and Junaid Zafar were some
of the students of batch 2005 who were dropped out in their third year due to
their poor result in the first year.
GCU Registrar Faisal Khursheed said
GCU was doing its best in accordance with the recommended policies of the HEC.
GCU Public Relations Officer Iqbal Anjum, however, refused to give the
present strength of students.
FCCU: Students praised the FCCU for its
student-friendly rules. They said they could not spend four years on campus, so
the FCCU administration had awarded them a two-year conventional degree. The
FCCU vice principal and chief advancement officer were not available for
comment. The FCCU spokesman, however, refused to give official figure of
HEC: HEC Executive Director Professor Dr S Sohail
Naqvi said, "HEC does not intervene in internal affairs of universities. The aim
of four-year honours programme is to lessen the gap between teachers and
students. Four-year honours programme was started in two ways – semester system
and annual system. Initially, HEC started the semester system in universities
where it gained popularity among students. 25 colleges of the Punjab will soon
have the semester system for their four-year honour programmes." Daily Times
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NTU stakeholders' fate to be decided
Faisalabad: The National Textile University's (NTU) board of
governors will likely to decide the fate of the vice-chancellor, students and
the All Pakistan Textile Mills Association (APTMA) in its second meeting on
It is learnt that board meeting will be held in Lahore
and the issues likely to come into consideration are: acceptance of students'
demands, closure of the university for an indefinite period or expulsion of the
Sources said that a report of the fact-finding commission would be
the key to decide the fate of the parties concerned and issues pertaining to the
NTU. The report is based on the observation of the commission during its one-day
visit to the academia.
The commission had visited the university a couple
of days ago and held talks with faculty members, administration and students as
well. They said all stakeholders had presented their point of view in the
discussion regarding the prevailing situation in the academia which had been
hampering the educational activities for the last two months.
university, which has been closed thrice, will resume its educational activities
from June 6.
The university's third time closure was the outcome of a
protest drive launched by students against the administration.
are demanding accreditation of the university with the Pakistan Engineering
Council (PEC), disbandment of the APTMA, an organizing body of the NTU, and
resignation of the VC.
The BoG, sources said, would also thrash out the
points raised by the faculty members in a latter sent to the board on May 15
which held the administration responsible for all the fuss created in the
Scores of students said they would not
accept any decision supporting the authoritarian rule.
They said that
their demands were genuine and the people who failed to get the PEC
accreditation must be shown the door.
The BoG comprises NTU
pro-chancellor Anjum M. Saleem, rector Tariq Mehmood and NTU vice-chancellor
Vice Admiral Masood M. Biabani (retired). While its members are the APTMA
chairman, Mian Mohammad Latif, Ismail Khurram, Khalilul Rehman, Nasir Shafi,
Mian Muhammad Saleem, Shahzad Abdullah, Shahzad Ahmed Sheikh, Humayun Naseer
Sheikh, LUMS VC, UET's Lahore VC, Textile Industry Ministry secretary, textile
commissioner, representatives of Punjab, the NWFP governments and a Higher
Education Commission (HEC) representative. Dawn
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Reading ceremony at PU
Lahore: The Punjab University Department of English Language and
Literature organised a special ceremony on "Readings: Contemporary South Asian
Voices" in connection with 125th year celebrations of the university and the
book fair on Friday.
According to a press statement, books from which
extracts and poems were read included Hima Raza's "Us in the Two Tones", Alamgir
Hashmi's "This Time in Lahore", Mehboob Ahmad's "Images on my Television",
Rizwan Akhtar's "A Photograph", Taufiq Rafat's "Monsoon", Muhammad Athar Tahir's
"Mall Road", Bapsi Sidwa's ́Rendering of Habib Jalib's Dastoor", Sujata Bhatt's
"What Happened to the Elephant?", Hira Zahid's "My Diary" and Sujata Bhatt's
"Search for my Tongue".
Punjab University External Linkages Director Prof
Najma Najam, Registrar Prof Muhammad Naeem Khan, faculty members and a large
number of students were present on the occasion.
Dr Najma Najam
congratulated the organisers on holding such important event. She said students
must develop reading habits to get success in their studies and practical
Prof Dr Muhammad Naeem Khan said students were getting away from
books because of internet and other electronic sources of knowledge and there
was a dire need to create awareness to highlight importance of books. The News
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BNU students theses work at Alhamra
Lahore: The thesis display of Beaconhouse National University
(BNU) students opened at BNU and Alhamra Art Gallery simultaneously on
Students who displayed their works belonged to the Fine Arts
Department, Visual Communications Design Department, Textile Design Department
and Jewellery Design Department.
Alhamra was one of the venues, as the
BNU campus did not have enough space to display the entire thesis.
were scores of theses on display, but the ones that stood out were by Sadaf
Yousaf, Maria Khan, Kashif Akram and Fareeha Ahmed.
Sadaf Yousaf is from
the Fine Arts Department. He thesis was called 'Travel Travails'. She had
basically recreated her life and everything around it with motifs used in truck
art. She said that people were actually the fabricated shells of souls. She said
that hypocrisy, which she also called the lubricant that made urban society go,
had hit her hard during her travels between Lahore and Gujranwala.
reflected her newfound academic life away from home (Sadaf is from Gujranwala),
Lahoris on campus and so-called personal freedom. She said that somehow the
plasticity, superficiality and ideas of freedom inspired her. She said that she
had presented the symbolic overspill of her journeys.
Maria Khan is from
the Textile Design Department. Her thesis was on the surface design for
ceremonial tents or qannats. She said the old chintz prints of the subcontinent
had inspired her.
She said that traditional tents, which had a rich
history, were lost due to non-patronage in contemporary times. She said that her
thesis was an attempt to create fresh design ideas for the lost art of qannat
making. The colour combination of her design was mouth watering, as she had used
gold, black and pink.
Kashif Akram is also from the Textile Design
Department. He said, "My thesis is on the army's role in Pakistani
politics. I am not against the army, but I am against the army breaking our
His display showed an army camp with blood, mirrors
and a few other paraphernalia.
Fareeha Ahmed is from the Communications
Design Department. Her work was on the human psyche and perception of various
factors. She designed various brochures, post cards, billboards and hoardings
that gave the message of the common man and various activities going on in
everyday life. She said, "We need to contemplate whether we want to head towards
another constitutional crisis. The judges issue is about the system, not one
about 100 individuals."
There were many people at Alhamra who were not
interested in the theses and were seen nicking items from the displays. There
were no formal complaints, but students were on the lookout for the thieves. Daily Times
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Education department acts to retrieve land
Sahiwal: The district education department has identified 73 schools of
diverse grades whose land is illegally occupied by influential people.
is learnt that the district government is devising a strategy for getting the
land of these schools vacated from illegal occupants.
The local education
department has collected details of existing infrastructure of 1,306 schools in
the district broadly falls in three categories -- primary, elementary and higher
The kind of details gathered include information regarding the
status of schools in terms of the building structure, trees, electricity,
boundary wall, drinking water facilities, telephones, staff shortage, toilets
EDO (Education) Mrs Naheed Wasif said it was during this
exercise that the department learnt that the land of 73 schools had been in
illegal possession for several years.
She said only the open areas of
these schools were occupied which were being used for varied purposes.
village schools, the landlords, whose lands were adjacent to the boundary walls
of these schools, were using the occupied land for agriculture purpose and as
cattle pens, she said.
While the land of schools located in cities and
towns had been occupied for residential and business purposes, the EDO
She said one such example was the Government High School, Sahiwal,
whose 50 kanals of land had been in possession of the Janzbaz Infantry Force for
the last 20 years.
"Offices of the Janbaz Infantry Forces are presently
located in the old hostel building of the school".
visited the area and found residences of Janbaz Force personnel in the building
of old school hostel constructed in 1936. Janbaz Force in charge Maj Riaz said
that the force was administratively under the DCO and people were trained for
the civil defence purpose.
He said: "I have trained five companies having
600 men each. Former DCOs had given this land to the force some 25 years back. I
will vacate the place if alternative arrangements are made for my
A schoolteacher, requesting anonymity, claimed that former
employee of municipal committee Faiz Butt had raised his house on four-kanal
land of the MC Primary School A Branch, Gole Chaker.
Similarly, he said,
Muhammad Isa had taken an illegal possession of one kanal land of Girls Middle
School at Chak 82/5-L.
DCO Muhammad Khichi said that officials of the
education department had been assigned the task to get the land of 26 primary
schools vacated from the illegal occupiers.
As for the remaining 47
schools, the DCO said that a committee, comprising EDO (education), EDO
(revenue) and police officials, had been formed to lay hand on the big fish. Dawn
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