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IJT activists thrashed PU professor

IJT activists attacked the Vice Chancellor (VC) Office
Lahore, Apr 02: Dozens of activists of the Islami Jamiat Talaba (IJT) critically injured a senior professor of the Punjab University, ransacked his office, damaged vehicles outside his office and also attacked the Vice Chancellor (VC) Office and the VC House at varsity's New Campus on Thursday.

The varsity officials said the violent reaction was the result of expulsion of some students belonging to the IJT. They said around five IJT activists, whose cases were processed by the varsity's Disciplinary Committee, were issued expulsion notifications on Thursday, which aggravated the situation.

The officials further alleged that dozens of Jamiat activists attacked the office of the PU College of Earth & Environmental Sciences (CEES) Prof Dr Iftikhar Hussain Baloch, who was also Chairman of the Disciplinary Committee, with sticks and rods at around 3:30 pm. They added some activists then moved to the VC Office and his residence and caused damage to the properties.

They further said since the Jamiat activists were more in number, the university guards failed to resist and stop them. PU Resident Officer (RO) Prof Shahid Mahmood Gul and Chairman Hall Council Prof Dr Muhammad Akhtar said Dr Baloch had received severe head injuries and fell unconscious for quite some time, adding he was taken to Jinnah Hospital but was referred to the Services Hospital.

They said Dr Iftikhar Baloch was the main target of the IJT activists as he was heading the Disciplinary Committee which had recently expelled some of their colleagues after through investigations including opportunity of personal hearing.

The IJT, the student wing of Jamaat-e-Islami (JI), had earlier blocked the main Canal Road as a protest against the expulsion of their colleagues. However, after police intervention, they left the scene and entered the university premises.

Meanwhile, addressing an emergent press conference at the PU Executive Club, VC Prof Dr Mujahid Kamran, who was flanked by other officials said Jamiat activists were involved in the incident, adding it was the darkest day in the history of the Punjab University. They strongly condemned the incident

PU Chapter IJT Nazim Hasaan Bin Salman, who is the son of noted JI leader Hafiz Salman Butt, said those involved in the incident were not members of the Jamiat, adding it was unfortunate that the varsity administration was implicating the IJT. "In fact, I myself went to disperse the students who were earlier protesting by blocking the main Canal Road," he claimed adding "The Jamiat strongly condemns the incident."

Meanwhile, an IJT press statement also denied involvement of its activists in the incident. PU Chapter Jamiat's secretary information Hanan Nafees alleged in the statement that the PU administration was levelling baseless allegations against the student organisation. "Each year before the book fair, the PU admin accuses the Jamiat to damage the academic activity organized by Jamiat," it concluded.

Meanwhile, Insaf Students Federation (ISF), the student wing of Pakistan Tehrik-e-Insaf (PTI), has condemned the IJT attack alleging the so-called student organization, Jamiat, was a terrorist organisation. ISF Lahore general secretary Farrukh Habib and PU chapter president Kamil Hameed said many FIRs had been registered against the Jamiat activists but no action had been taken. The news

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BNU administration seeks time to reconsider departments' merger
Lahore: The Beaconhouse National University (BNU) administration sought some time from the students of School of Liberal Arts (SLA) to deliberate their decision of merging SLA with the School of Social Sciences (SSS) and said they will call the board of governors' (BoG) meeting earlier than schedule to resolve the issue.

BNU Vice Chancellor Sartaj Aziz invited a delegation of students on Thursday and urged them to end their protest, adding that the administration would address their grievances in the BoG meeting, which will be called in April instead of its scheduled time in June. BNU Registrar Farzana Shahid was also present in the meeting. The SLA students had launched a protest inside the campus on Wednesday after the administration announced the merger of SLA into SSS and the removal of SLA Dean Naveed Shahzad.

The students told the reporters that the merger was illogical as the two departments were not relevant to each other in any way and Naveed Shahzad was the most competent and qualified person for the curriculum they were studying. They said they would not let her be terminated as the department had come up to this level because of her untiring efforts.

However, Sartaj Aziz said that the university will listen to the students' demands and that Naveed Shahzad was not being terminated but they were promoting her. The SLA students who met the VC included Shahrukh Naveed, Alizeh Khalid, Hasham bin Munawar, Fahad Noor. They said that the administration showed a positive sign by listening to their demands, including withdrawing the decision to merge the two departments and keeping their favourite teachers.

Request: They also said they had requested the administration to include some people from the field of arts in the BoG as the university claimed to specialise in liberal arts yet the board mostly comprised economists who had nothing to do with their subjects.

A student said the VC also talked about the possibility of merging SLA with the School of Mass Communication, however, they told him that keeping SLA as an independent department was a better option.

Termination: "We also requested our vice chancellor not to terminate Naveed Shahzad because she is the one who developed the department to this advanced level and is experienced in the subjects we are studying. The VC has assured us that our teacher will be kept," he asserted. The students said some of them wanted to continue their protest and boycott classes instead of giving the administration the time sought, adding, however, they will decide their future course of action after handing over a written charter of demands to the administration today (Friday). Daily times

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AIMC principal among 50 doctors booked
Lahore: The Garden Town Police have registered a case against around 50 doctors, including Prof Dr Javed Akram, Principal Allama Iqbal Medical College/ Jinnah Hospital, for thrashing journalists and damaging their electronic gadgets. On Wednesday, the premises of Jinnah Hospital tuned into a 'battlefield' when dozens of doctors, paramedics and students attacked the journalists and cameramen covering a protest staged by a family over the death of a patient.

Prof Dr Javed Akram reportedly provoked the doctors and paramedics into manhandling the journalists. The call made by the Prof Dr Javed Akram encouraged the doctors and paramedics who turned violent and damaged the set-up of Digital Satellite News Gathering (DSNG) of few TV channels. The doctors snatched cameras of some cameramen besides breaking cameras of two others in a bid to damage the footage of the protest.

After two hours of this incident, it was observed that more than 100 doctors and paramedical staff of the hospital came out of the hospital and ransacked three-story office of Saher Cable Networks for not blocking their service. They also injured 10 employees of the cable network.

Nine journalists of different organisations sustained injuries in the incident. When contacted, Garden Town SHO Rehan Zia said the case was registered under Sections 341/379/427/148/149 PPC on the complaint of Punjab Union of Journalists president. He said the complainant only nominated the principal of Allama Iqbal Medical College in the FIR while the remaining doctors involved in the incident were yet to be identified.

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UHS employees to stage protest in front of PA today
Lahore: The employees of University of Health Sciences urged Chief Minister Mian Shahbaz Sharif to take notice of the varsity administration's warning of removal from services for failing to join their duties by April 3.

Taking strong exception of this, they said this unilateral action against them was being taken for raising their just demand of regularisation. They said it is one of the sickest jokes on April foolís day.

The hunger strike and protest under scorching sun by the employees of University of Health Sciences for the past one week has so far failed to move provincial government authorities as none of the officials bothered to visit the protesting employees in order to give a sympathetic word with regard to resolving the conflict in an amicable manner.

"We have been made to run from pillar to post but no body has turned up to listen to the genuine grievance of depriving them of their right of regularisation," the UHS employees said, adding that the provincial government must stand behind the underprivileged and less powerful employees rather than supporting privileged high-ups of the university for their unjust decision of denying regularisation to its non-gazetted employees.

The hunger strike camp and protest demonstration of employees, under the banner of All Pakistan Clerks Association UHS Unit was led by its president, Mian Naveed and other office-bearers. It continued here outside UHS premises on Thursday as they were denied entry on the seventh day. The APCA representatives including Chaudhry Afzal, Haji Irshad, and Nadeem Chughtai, Lala Aslam, Fazal Dad Gujjar, Sultan Mujaddadi and other office-bearers also joined them in their protest to show solidarity with their colleagues of UHS for their just demand of regularisation. The UHS employees were supposed to hold protest and hunger strike camp outside Lahore Press Club on Thursday, but they were denied access to planned venue due to closure of roads on the arrival of Turkish President in Lahore.

However, continuing their protest outside UHS premises, the employees were holding banners and placards inscribed with their demands and raising slogans against university administration's haughty and dictatorial attitude with the employees, by opening violating the Punjab government's orders to regularize all employees from grade 1 to 15 as it had already abolished contract policy in the province. In violation of Punjab government's policy, they said the UHS had awarded five year and six month contracts to the employees, adding that now the UHS had through an advertisement in the newspapers had warned them to join their duties till April 3 or face termination from their services. "It's an open challenge to the administration of provincial government, which is working for the welfare of non-gazetted employees as reflected in the regularization of grade 1 to 15 employees in all government institutions in the province," they said, urging the Punjab government to order UHS to withdraw this advertisement forthwith.

They demanded of the Chief Minister Mian Shahbaz Sharif to intervene and protect the livelihood of grade 1 to 15 employees of the university and their families otherwise they would not be able to support their poor families in unemployment.

The UHS employees have vowed to continue hunger strike till death for fulfilment of their just demand of regularization, adding that if any employee's condition deteriorated or died, then the entire responsibility would lie with the Punjab government administration and Vice Chancellor of the university. They also announced to hold their hunger strike camp in front of Punjab Assembly on Friday (today). The news

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Baitbazi contest held at UVAS
Lahore: University of Veterinary and Animal Sciences' literary society (UVAS) organized a Mehfil-e-Mushaira and Baitzazi contest on third day Wednesday of the 'Student Week' of the varsity. The special and chief guest of the third day of the UVAS 'student week' Director Animal Sciences, United States, Department of Agriculture (USDA) Dr Muqarrab Ali also read out his own poetry in the mehfil-e-mushaira. Addressing on the occasion, Muqarrab Ali said that UVAS vice chancellor Prof Dr Muhammad Nawaz is tying its level best to make linkages with the renowned education institutions of the world. He said that history of UVAS from the beginning is marvelous and commendable as its veterinarians are serving in the renowned companies and departments internationally. As per details, male and female students took part in the mehfil-e-mushaira and baitbazi contest that started in the auditorium room of UVAS at 1:30pm and continued till 6:00pm. F.P. report

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PU result
Lahore: The Punjab University (PU) Examinations Department has announced the result of Postgraduate Diploma in Criminology & Security Studies Programme, Semester Session 2007-2008, on Thursday. The detailed result is available on PU website

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Primary schools now English medium
Lahore: The Punjab government has declared all public sector primary schools in Lahore, Multan and Faisalabad as English medium from April 1. According to a DGPR handout, subjects of math and science would be taught in the English language to improve standard of education in the public sector schools in the province.

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New Urdu book
Lahore: Urdu book 'Tasawwraat' written by poet and critic Dr Jawaz Jafferi is available in the market. The book contains around 18 creative and research-based chapters. Dr Jawaz Jafferi, who is serving at Urdu Department, MAO College, has written ten books. Dr Jafferi has been exploring Urdu literary works of foreign writers and bringing them to aubcontinent readers. The news

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