40pc children out of school | Agricultural Uni favoritism
Up to 40pc children out of school: report
Islamabad, May 28: An estimated 35 to 40 per cent children of school going age
are out in streets or cannot access education. At the same time, economic
crunch, ongoing war on terror and education under attack are likely to cause
increase in child labour that already stands at up to 12 million mark.
These facts were listed on the top of a report entitled "The State of
Pakistan's Children 2008" launched here Wednesday. Spread on 270 pages, the
report was prepared by the Society for Protection of the Rights of the Child
Highlighting the plight of children, the report said almost 30
per cent children under five years of age were malnourished. Pakistan had one of
the highest rates of infant mortality at 73 per 1,000 births in South Asia,
while as much as 9,000 to 10,000 child offenders were in criminal litigation.
Among other problems, quality education became focus of deliberations.
Pervaiz Hoodbhoy was less concerned with billions not being pumped into
education than the little spent on mis-education. "It's a damning failure of our
system," he said, criticising authorities for manipulating children for specific
ends that no civilised society should allow.
"In last 25 years we have
poisoned the minds of children, teaching them to acknowledge and identify forces
working against Pakistan, demonstrating by actions and belief in fear of Allah,
understanding differences between Hindus and Muslims, comprehending India's evil
designs against Pakistan and collecting pictures of soldiers and policemen," Mr
The report quoted World Economic Forum's Global
Competitiveness 2008-09 that ranked Pakistan 117 out of 134 countries in terms
of quality of primary education.
It also said 20 per cent of Pakistan
lacked educational facilities and Rs6.5 billion Public Sector Development
Programme 2007-08 did not address the problem.The report also quoted United
Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (Unesco) that listed
Pakistan among countries where education was under attack.
sorry tales from Swat, the report highlighted that education was most under
threat in two major provinces – NWFP and Balochistan – both riddled with
The seven chapters revealed that situation of
children and child rights continued to receive low priority by the government
and the civil society.
Giving highlights, Sparc Manager Media Fazila
Gulrez disclosed that the state of Pakistan's children continued to be sad. She
said Pakistan had legislated laws both at the national and provincial level to
protect children such as juveniles from child labour, child marriages; to
guarantee education to ensure every child enjoyed the right to education at
least at primary level; and protect children on streets.
were being denied their fundamental rights to education, safety and security,
quality and proper health care and recreation among many other basic rights.
This is a result of poor or no enforcement of laws and poverty of will on the
part of the government and the civil society to take children and their life and
future seriously, she said.
Ms Gulrez added that going by the
situational analysis of the state of Pakistan's children, the war on terror in
many ways mirrored consequences of denial of human and child rights for the last
60 years. Swiss Embassy's Charge d'Affaires Konstantin Obolensky hoped that more
child rights activists and defenders would come forward to address vulnerable
Norwegian Embassy Minister Counsellor Development Dr Sissel
Volan stressed that "Education is an underlying priority if Pakistan wants to
accord priority to its children."National Programme Manager (Juvenile Justice)
Rafiq Khan said: "There are serious offences committed against children and not
covered under the provisions of penal laws of Pakistan – corporal punishment,
child sexual abuse, child pornography, and sale and trafficking of children with
"The traffickers, exploiters, abusers and molesters of
children enjoy impunity. There is an urgent need to bring such offences under
the ambit of law. To safeguard the safety and security of children's lives, body
and soul the government must introduce a comprehensive child protection law in
Federal Minister for Human Rights Syed Mumtaz Alam Ghani was
the chief guest on the occasion. Dawn
Post your comments
Agri varsity admin accused of favoritism in appointments, promotions
Peshawar: The administration of NWFP Agricultural
University has been accused of nepotism and favoritism in appointments and
promotions in the high seat of learning, while vice-chancellor of the university
has set aside the allegations as baseless.
Sources said that
Vice-Chancellor Prof Dr Said Khan Khalil selected Assistant Professor Sajjad
Ahmad for the position of full professor in entomology department, allegedly
bypassing Dr Imtiaz Ali Khan, associate professor and chairman of the department
The sources said Sajjad was selected associate professor
and professor in the same selection board meeting and recommended to the
syndicate meeting. The selection board had to co-opt experts for evaluation of
the candidates for the post of professor based on their qualifications, thereby
meaning this expert shall not be a member of selection board. But in the instant
case, a member of the selection board Dr Umar Khan Baloch acted as co-opted
member as well as regular member of the selection board, the sources said.
The syndicate, however, in its meeting on January 1, did not approve the
recommendation of the selection board, the sources added. The case has now been
put before the selection board in its meeting to be held in the first week of
The vice-chancellor, on the other hand, when reached a few days
ago, rejected the allegations as baseless. He said he did not select people for
different positions. "A proper procedure is followed for the purpose and it is a
common practice that whoever fails to get a position, he starts creating hue and
cry," he said.
The sources said in another case of similar nature, Dr
Fazli Raziq, who lost both the legs due to diabetes, was bypassed and Dr Shaukat
Hussain was selected as professor. Dr Fazli Raziq is gold medalist and has many
research projects as well as impact factor publications in international
journals, the sources said.
The selection of Dr Jahan Bakht as professor
in the Institute of Biotechnology and Genetic Engineering despite having no
relevant experience and publications is another example of favoritism, the
sources added. He has done his PhD in botany and not in biotechnology. His only
qualification is that he is in the good books of the vice-chancellor and a
member of the university syndicate, the sources said.
vice-chancellor was also accused of appointing his closest relatives against
different positions in the university without following any criteria and merit.
The sources said the vice-chancellor appointed his nephew Shahid among his seven
other relatives in the university.
The vice-chancellor, however, said
none of his nephews was serving in the university. "No doubt Shahid is my
nephew, but he is not working here. He is doing a prized job in Islamabad," he
The official said all the promotions and recruitments were made by
the selection board and syndicate. "How could I intervene or influence the
decisions of these high valued bodies," he remarked.
Post your comments
Protest against poor educational standards
Nausharo Feroze: Childrenís rights committee on Wednesday
staged a demonstration in front of the press club of Naushahro Feroze against
poor education standards in Madrassas and high schools of Naushahro Feroze. The
demonstration was led by Zahid Rajpar, district coordinator of the committee,
Mazher Khaskheli, Suhail Rajpar and others. Talking to newsmen, they said the
high school administration was not imparting standard education to their
students as a result of which only 17 students passed the Matric examination
from 250 students. They said furniture, fans, drinking water and other
facilities were inadequate.
Post your comments
Govt plans to include environment in syllabus
Islamabad: In order to familiarise the children with various environmental
aspects and hazards, the government is planning to include environment as a
subject in the syllabus of Class 9.
This was stated by Federal Minister
for Environment Hameed Ullah Jan Afridi in a seminar titled 'Asthma Control:
Environment & Public Awareness', organised here Wednesday at Preston
The minister said environmental pollution is, in fact, a
major cause behind the rise in the number of asthma patients. "This is the
reason why environmental control and management is considered imperative in
dealing with this alarmingly increasing disease," he said.
initiatives are being taken at international level to enhance public awareness
about asthma and Pakistan does not lag behind in this regard, as the government
is working on war footing to effectively deal with the issue of asthma and is
providing the required medical aid to people across the country with a sense of
great urgency and responsibility.
"A fairly large number of people are
affected by the disease in Pakistan among which children are more vulnerable and
more seriously affected," he said and added that the ministry hopefully would be
able to include environment as a subject in the school syllabus this year to
mobilise the children and deal with the root cause of the issue.
unfortunately, Pakistan is facing various environmental dangers and the
situation is getting worse day by day. "According to the national environmental
policy, cutting of trees is prohibited but the practice still continues," he
said. "In India, trees constitute 25 per cent of the total land but in Pakistan,
we have a forest cover of only four per cent," he regretted. The minister
emphasised that it is not only the government's responsibility to deal with
every environmental issue but each individual and institution equally has a part
On the occasion, Dr Osman Yusuf, a specialist in asthma and
allergy, said it is a widely prevalent misconception in Pakistan that the cause
of allergy is ineffective immune system but the fact is that it is the
unnecessary working of the immune system that leads to various types of
allergies. The News
Post your comments