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NED University retired professor Dr A.Q. Alvi case

NED given 30 days to clear ex-professor's dues
Karachi, Apr 20: The Sindh ombudsman has directed the vice-chancellor of the NED University of Engineering and Technology to clear Rs3.339 million dues, which the university owed to retired professor Dr A.Q. Alvi within 30 days.

The directive was issued by Ombudsman Asad Ashraf Malik to VC Abul Kalam on April 14 on a complaint filed by the retired professor.

Dr Alvi had complained that the NED varsity had been unjustly withholding the payment for over 23 years.

The ombudsman stated that the complainant could file a suit in a competent court of jurisdiction for damages / profit caused due to the inordinate delay in the payment of arrears by the university if he so desired.

The breakdown of Rs3,339,897.70 arrears as put by the ombudsman was: provident fund (Rs662,432), commutation (Rs997,022.10), monthly pension up to Feb 2010 (Rs1,624,555.60), salary for Oct/Nov 1986 (Rs18,216), qualification allowance (Rs9,000), salary for June 1991 (Rs5,673), and encashment of 49-day leave (Rs22,990).

Prof Alvi had obtained permission from the university to do some consultancy work and earned some money but the university later demanded a 30 per cent share in his income. The professor refused to share the earnings, arguing that there was no mention of the share in the permission granted to him. The university, however, withheld his dues on his retirement and adjusted the same against its demand of a 30 per cent share of his earning.

The ombudsman, in his concluding remarks, said that the complainant had been deprived of pay and other benefits for about 23 years whereas all his dues should have been paid / settled within two weeks of his retirement, which was a clear violation of a Supreme Court judgment.

He said the university failed to follow the rules and directives of the Sindh finance department in absolute disregard of established financial practices.

The ombudsman noted that the university also failed to realise that the permission granted to the complainant had no condition for a 30 per cent share in the income.

Besides, the university failed to appreciate that its decision taken at a later date could not be applied retrospectively to a person availing a benefit under an earlier order even though it was passed by the same authority which had passed the earlier order allowing certain benefits (PLD 1969 Supreme Court 407).

The ombudsman said it was obvious that those at the helm of affairs at the NED varsity were responsible for delaying the payment of the service dues of Dr Alvi to him. "By delaying finalisation of pension benefits, flagrant disregard has been shown to the judgment (Criminal Misc Application No 226 of 2006 decided on May 18, 2006, PLD 2007 Supreme Court 35) passed by the supreme court."

Referring to a 1969 judgment of the then Chief Justice of Pakistan Hamoodur Rehman, which states: "Principle of locus poenitentiae (power of receding till decisive step taken) is available to government or relevant authorities Authority competent to make order has power to undo it Order, however, cannot be withdrawn or rescinded once it has taken legal effect and certain rights created in favour of any individual General Clauses Act (X of 1897), S.21", the ombudsman said that the permission accorded to the complainant earlier could neither be revoked nor withdrawn and as such, the benefit drawn by the complainant as well could not be withdrawn or rescinded by the university.

The ombudsman also referred to a Supreme Court ruling (PLD Volume LIX, 2007.Para 11) passed in 2006. The judgment stated: "We also direct that in future if there is any delay in the finalization of the pension benefits cases of the government servants, widows or orphan children and the matter is brought to the notice of the court, the head of the concerned department shall also be held liable for the contempt of the court and shall be dealt with strictly in accordance with law." Dawn

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Earth Day at KU
Karachi: The Sindh Environmental Protection Agency (Sepa) and the Sindh Environment and Alternate Energy Department have jointly chalked out several activities to celebrate the Earth Day at the University of Karachi (KU) on April 22. Tree plantation, garbage collection, a seminar and an awareness walk will be held to mark the day. According to Mirza Mujtaba Baig, Assistant Director of public awareness at the Sepa, tree plantation and garbage collection exercises involving students would be carried out on April 21 at the KU. Similarly, a seminar and an awareness walk would be held on April 22. Sindh Sports Minister Dr Muhammad Ali Shah would be the chief guest. The news

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UoB Convocation on April 21
Quetta: Tenth convocation of University of Balochistan would be held here on April 21 at University Gymnasium. Governor Balochistan who is also Chancellor of University would be chief guest.

UoB sources said here Monday that full dress rehearsal for the convocation would be held on April 20.

Three students passed out from different disciplines, four PHDs, 11 MPhil awards, 34 gold medalists would be conferred degrees. Ppi

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Jinnah College for Women (UoP) convocation
Peshawar: The 19th annual convocation of Jinnah College for Women (JCW), University of Peshawar would be held on April 29 at Convocation Hall of the varsity.

Vice Chancellor University of Peshawar Prof Dr Azmat Hayat and Principal of Jinnah College for Women Dr Nilofar Zeb Arbab would distribute degrees among the successful students.

The full dress rehearsal would be held in Convocation Hall, Peshawar University on April 28. App

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School Cluster System: Principals to get monitoring powers
Peshawar: The education department has decided to empower the principals of high and higher secondary schools to monitor all the government-run primary and middle schools in their locality.

The elementary and secondary education department is all set to implement its newly-devised system called "School Cluster System", which is aimed at strengthening the monitoring of schools all across the province.

The administrative and financial powers currently exercised by a deputy district officer (DDO) in all the primary and middle schools in a town or tehsil would be transferred to the principals of high and higher secondary schools, an official said.

Presently a DDO not only looks after the administrative and financial matters of the primary and middle schools in tehsil and town level but is also responsible to monitor the schools' performance. Too many responsibilities have resulted in incapability of these officers to fully perform their duties. The education authorities have decided to share their responsibilities with the high and higher secondary schools' principals to monitor the primary and middle schools in their locality, official sources said.

"It is not physically possible for the DDO to monitor a large number of schools in his jurisdiction", an education department official said.

Project Director Education Sector Reforms Unit (ESRU) Raja Saad Khan said that with the increase in responsibilities of the principals, the government would revise their job description and salaries.

Leave sanctioning authority, conducting trainings, power to take disciplinary actions, repairing and smalltime constructions and transfer and posting of teachers within the cluster schools would be given to the principals, he said.

With the implementation of the School Cluster System (SCS), monitoring of the primary and middle schools would be strengthened up to a large extent. Absenteeism of teachers, which is very common in the primary and middle schools, would be controlled.

Under the new system, schools would be divided into clusters. Each cluster would consist of a high/higher secondary school as well as many middle and primary schools located near to it, an official said. The number of primary and middle schools within the cluster would be five to 15.

"Once the SCS is implemented, the primary and middle schools under the jurisdiction of a high and higher secondary school will be administered by the principal of the high and higher secondary school", an official said.

The teachers usually remain absent from the schools but do sign the attendance register on the second day with the consent of the respective headmasters. Such teachers did not fear any legal action against them by the DDO as they knew that DDO couldn't visit each and every school in his jurisdiction.

After the implementation of the SCS, it would be difficult for the teachers to violate discipline.

Similarly all the financial matters of the cluster schools would be handled by the principal in charge, which would prove helpful for the teachers to address their problems at local level. Dawn

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Lady Cadets
Karachi: I felt proud when I saw the passing out parade of Gentleman Cadets (GCs) and Lady Cadets (LCs) which was held at Pakistan Military Academy in Kakul on April 17. During the era of Musharraf government, Pakistan Armed Forces started to give chance to the graduate ladies and a large number of young ladies have joined the ranks of the armed forces. Being a girl, I want to appreciate and congratulate those cadets who received the ranks of captain in Pakistan Army. It is an honour for each and every person of our nation that the women of our country are also serving and defending their motherland. I also congratulate and thank the parents of these cadets that they permitted them to serve the country and defend their homeland. They all are a symbol of pride for our nation. By Sakina Mubarak(F.P report)

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