Pakistan education & literacy rate
Education sector – always at the receiving end
Islamabad, Sept 24: The issue of the lack of funding to the education sector is no secret in
this country. Despite repeated proclamations by every incoming
government – be it a democratically-elected one or a dictatorship –
there has been little improvement in the sector. This much is clear from
the fact that Pakistan is bracketed with sub-Saharan states region when
it comes to education.
The present government in its new
education policy had also announced that it would achieve over 80 per
cent literacy by 2015. Though how it reached either the figure or the
year remains unexplained. But it is now clear that this was simply
rhetoric because since then the government has not even been able to
spare a meagerly two per cent of the GDP for the education sector.
However, the biggest blow came this year to the HEC. The annual budget
of a commission that was the cornerstone of General Pervez Musharraf's
education policy kept on increasing every year till 2008 elections
rolled in. Since then, the HEC has seen a scaling down of the finances
at its disposal; a downward revision was made last year when the budget
was reduced from Rs22.5 billion to Rs15 billion for the development of
public-sector universities this year.
But the woes of the HEC
and higher education did not end here. The government constantly delayed
the release of funds or further reduced the sums it had promised. This
became such an issue over the past year that it began making headlines.
And the issue came to a head this past week when the heads of 72
state-run universities warned that their institutions were about to go
bankrupt due to shortage of funds. This was because of the latest steps
taken by the government; besides holding back development funds, which
were earmarked for the Public Sector Development Programme in the last
financial year, it also refused to release money committed in the
current year for the universities.
Backed into a financial
corner, the academic staff of the 72 institutes announced a strike for
September 22, 2010. At the same time Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani
set up a special committee with Deputy Chairman Planning Commission
Nadeem-ul-Haq to resolve the issue.
However, very little of
this echoed in the rhetoric of our political class. This reveals the
apathy of the PPP and the government and of our politicians in general.
Those who regularly visit and cover proceedings of the Senate and the
National Assembly can testify that no comprehensive debate on education
took place in the two houses, let alone calling a special session on the
Where is the young, energetic, and pro-active Choudhry
Abid Sher Ali, chairman of the National Assembly Standing Committee?
While the vice-chancellors of all public-sector universities are up in
arms because of shortage of funds, this PML-N MAN who never stopped
highlighting the alleged wrongdoing of the daughter of the former Chief
Justice Abdul Hameed Dogar and that of the fake degree holders is
nowhere to be seen.
During a recently held meeting of the
vice-chancellors committee, a number of them could be heard criticising
Mr Sher Ali for not helping the committee. They also spoke against
politicians in general for not according due consideration to the
During the earlier meetings of Mr Ali's
committee, a number of its members led by Dr Azra Fazal Pechucho of PPP
had termed him a publicity monger who only picked up issues which
attracted the media attraction. Is that why he did not bother
championing the cause of the higher education sector? Because he did not
think it made for a sound byte that would echo on all the channels?
What else can explain his absence from the scene? What was stopping him
from calling an emergency meeting of his committee to listen to the
vice-chancellors' concern, but also play a leading role, as he did in
highlighting the issue of the lawmakers with fake degrees?
one think that only Mr Sher Ali is at fault, it needs to be pointed out
that the National Assembly is no less guilty. Everything under the sun
was discussed during its last session - September 2 to 4 - which was
primarily convened to discuss flood situation. But nobody bothered to
move a motion to deliberate on the higher education sector in the
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95 percent Pakistani youth favours women education, says survey
Islamabad: The Pakistani youth takes their religion seriously without
expressing a desire to impose it on other people. It was revealed in a
research study conducted by Pak Institute for Peace Studies (PIPS) to
examine thinking patterns of Pakistani youth.
issue of 'Conflict and Peace Studies', a quarterly research journal of
the institute carries the outcome of the survey.
the PIPS survey of postgraduate students from 16 public and private
universities and postgraduate public colleges across the country, 79.4
percent of the respondents thought that the Pakistani Taliban did not
serve the cause of Islam. Most of the respondents (85.6 percent)
believed that suicide bombings were prohibited in Islam. The majority of
the respondents (61.7 percent) supported military operations in
Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa and the Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA).
the same time, these young Pakistanis overwhelmingly considered
religion an important factor in their life (92.4 percent), though 51.7
percent said that they do not offer prayers regularly. Daily times
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Students launch 'Pehchan Pakistan' project
Islamabad: In order to promote activism and leadership qualities among
youth of the country, 'Pehchan Pakistan' has been formally launched by a
group of ambitious yet enthusiastic students studying at various
academic institutions of United Kingdom and Pakistan.
The youth under
the banner of National Union of Pakistani Students and Alumni (NUPSA)
has completed the first round of their recently started 'Pehchan
Pakistan' tour. "We want to end hopelessness, desperation and
frustration from youth by motivating them to work for the progress of
country," said NUPSA member, Ali Raza.
NUPSA is a non-political
student organisation, funded by Pakistani students studying in the UK
universities. The organisation aims to achieve national unity, student
support and welfare, provision of funds to charities in the interest of
Pakistan and Pakistanis, provision of a united Pakistani student voice
to any relevant body, to build a bridge between current students and
alumni to provide networking opportunities and to strengthen democratic
values among youth of Pakistan.
NUPSA Vice President Mohammad Ammar
on the occasion said that 100 million of our population is under 25
years age group, but most of them were directionless and categorised in
different classes. "We want to bridge up the gap by ending the class
system and providing equal opportunities to youth so that they could
contribute towards the progress of country," he said.
Ali Hameed, a
student of Air University and member of Shaoor Society on the occasion
said that over the last one decade, the reputation of Pakistan has been
deteriorated due to the issues like extremism and terrorism.
is a need to highlight the positive image of the country, which is only
possible, if the youth of the country is engaged in positive
activities," he said.
On the occasion, Jang Group representative Aziz
Mahmound said that the best thing about the group was that it was non
political and doesn't have affiliation with any party. "Our country was
in dire need of such movements that could channelise youth and explore
their talent besides utilizing them for the progress of country," he
He said that Jang group would extend its full support to these
youngsters, who have brought the massage of peace and brotherhood in our
After the official launch of the tour, the caravan of these
students will start their tour to universities in Punjab going as far
as University in Multan. Throughout this tour they have been raising
funds for the flood victims, which would further stimulate NUSPA's flood
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O level exam distinction
Rawalpindi: Maham Malik, daughter of Rizwan Malik, joint
secretary in the Planning and Development Davison, obtained 14 A*
grades in the 'O' Level Examination 2010, says a press release. The news
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