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Rumpus on Quaid-i-Azam University

Rumpus on campus: QAU closed for fourdays
Islamabad, April 28: Quaid-i-Azam University (QAU) authorities closed the university for four days, and ordered some 800 final-year students to vacate hostels, after violence by some disgruntled students rocked the campus on Friday.

University sources said the action would not hurt the studies much because of the weekend and May Day holiday and on Wednesday the university would be rehearsing for the convocation ceremony set for May 3.

A group of hostel residents allegedly took advantage of the presence of media on the campus, to cover an International Conference on Social Sciences, to air grievances they had been nursing for a year and went violent.

Witnesses said the disgruntled group gathered at the entrance of the university on Friday morning, holding placards bearing their grievances and demands, and did nothing more than disrupt the traffic. But as their number increased, the protesters reportedly marched on the auditorium of the Earth Sciences Department where the conference was underway.

There they went violent, breaking down glass and other things, making some participants to leave the conference. There were no foreign delegates though at the conference. Police was called in and dispersed the rowdy students.

Inspector Shahid Mehmood of Secretariat Police Station who answered the call said that no FIR was registered as the university filed no complaint.

A disgruntled student asked about the group's grievances said it wanted the university management to ensure "quality services" to hostel inmates, initiate legal proceedings against a university bus driver who had killed a student in an accident, waive off the fine imposed on 25 members of the group after a clash with another group last year, and allow the revival of Quaideen Students Federation (QSF)."We will go for tougher action if the university management did not listen to us," warned the student.

A university teacher confided on condition of anonymity that the students which clashed last year belonged to Punjab and Gilgit-Baltistan. QAU had lodged an FIR with the police, naming six students, after the June 2011 incident which had closed the university for a few days.

QAU Vice-Chancellor Prof Masoom Yasinzai, recalling the incident, said: "Some students had fought at the start of their semester last year.

Now, at the closing of the academic year, they are trying to put pressure (for rescinding the disciplinary taken against them). Yesterday a group of students came to me seeking permission to reorganise the QSF but I told them that I am not authorised to allow that."

Students' unions in educational institutions were banned by the military regime of Gen Ziaul Haq in late 1970s and remain so.

Prof Yasinzai looked reluctant to take "the painful action of expelling" the students behind the latest incident but said the disciplinary committee of the university would certainly probe Friday's rumpus and find ways to punish the guilty.

Dozens of hostel students, fearing possible eviction, staged a counter protest against the troublemakers.

"They were a small group out to agitate issues to their own benefit. The vast majority of us are just interested in pursuing their studies in peace," Moazzam Durrani, a student of Anthropology Department said speaking for "the 8,000 students of the university". Dawn

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HEC to stop step-motherly treatment with social sciences
Islamabad: Higher Education Commission Chairperson Dr. Javaid Leghari has said that from now onward, HEC will stop step-motherly treatment meted out to social sciences.

Dr. Leghari was giving a comment in a lighter vein on an earlier speaker at 3-day International Conference on 'The Emerging Issues of Social Sciences in Pakistan' organised by the Faculty of Social Sciences in collaboration with Higher Education Commission at the Earth Sciences Auditorium here Friday.

The conference was marred by students protest under Quaidian Students Federation (QSF) for acceptance of their demands. They took advantage of the conference and presence of electronic media to put pressure on the administration. The students blocked the entry points to the campus, but the participants succeeded in sneaking into the venue. Still, the demo delayed the conference by 100 minutes when Dr Leghari finally made it through a backdoor.

Dr. Leghari said: "We have started deregistering substandard journals and you will see results in six months." He said: "We have left the country to a few anchorpersons and three or four politicians with fake degrees to decide our fate on TV channels and exhorted the universities to take over." He opined that 18th Amendment was passed without studying international systems. He criticised the working of implementation committee on devolution.

Referring to the presence of ambassador of Cuba, he appreciated the Cuban government as the best supporter of education in Pakistan.

Dr Masoom Yasinzai, Vice-Chancellor, QAU, said: "We are disseminating knowledge at lowest cost to the people." He said that QAU is growing by leaps and bounds in the last two years. He also talked of setting up new disciplines in near future. He said that many problems the country is facing fall in the realm of social sciences.

Dr. Nasir Ali Khan from HEC said that we spend less percentage of GDP than Nepal on education. He gave a slogan 'Taleem ko chaar (4% of GDP) do, qom ko sudhaar do.' This is still a capitulation as UN calls for at least 5 per cent of GDP spending on education.

Dr. Ashfaq Hasan Khan, Dean, Management Science, National University of Science and Technology, in his keynote address said that social sciences in the country are not in a good shape and universities can play key role in providing social sciences. He said that disciplines of economics and management had impact on policies. He said that acceptance of contribution to society depends upon quality of education. He said that a social scientist working in the government and not from CSS cadre is treated by 'baboos' as outsider and only education can make the difference. He enumerated and appreciated some economists produced in the era when HEC was UGC.

He said: "Our economy must grow to at least eight per cent (now 2%) to take in the younger generation." He also talked against devolution plan in education sector saying Pakistan is the only country without education and health ministers. He also referred to fake and substandard journals in which some social scientists are publishing their articles. He asked HEC to revisit the list of journals and remove such journals.

Earlier, Dr. Razia Sultana, Chairperson, Department of History and organiser of the show, welcomed the participants. Dr. Nizamuddin from University of Gujrat also spoke on the occasion.

The rest of sessions were cancelled due to protest and the venue of the conference was announced to have been shifted to HEC where the rest of the sessions will take place on Saturday and Sunday.

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Beaconhouse prize distribution ceremony held
Islamabad: To bring forward the talents of the students in public to keep instances of splendours for others and encourage them for something alike, the annual prize distribution ceremony was held on Friday, at the Beaconhouse School System, Boys Branch, Margalla campus, H-8/4, Islamabad, with characteristic fervour and enthusiasm, says a press release.

Dr. Inam-ur-Rehman, an eminent nuclear scientist of Pakistan, who has received 'Aizaz-i- Kamal' in 1991 and 'Sitar-i-Imtiaz' in 1996 in recognition of his outstanding services, graced the occasion with his presence. The programme began with the recitation of the Holy Qura'an. The senior master Humayun Syed, formally welcomed the chief guest and the worthy parents on this auspicious occasion. He acknowledged the dedication of the young students who undoubtedly are the embodiment of hope and bright future of the nation.

The Headmistress of Boys Branch Margalla Campus Naila Sohail presented the annual report of the school.

She informed the audience about the laurels brought by the Beaconites in their O level's exams where 42 students out of 163 achieved 8 A's and above. 75% of students achieved 4 A's and above. Bilal Ansar, another conscientious student of BMI.B won 75% UWC scholarship for LI-PO-Chun college in Hong Kong.

The English Dramatic Society presented the court scene from the famous Shakespearean Play 'The Merchant of Venice' where justice seems ready to take a cruel decision but wisdom prevails and ruthlessness has to accept its defeat. It was apt to the current situation prevailing in our society and stressed upon becoming more tolerant and patient.

Later the chief guest honoured the meritorious students who excelled in academics and co- curricular activities with shields and certificates. Beaconhouse School System Chief Executive Daniyal Kasuri was also present on the occasion.

Addressing the ceremony the chief guest emphasised on the role of the teachers and the parents. He advised the parents to invest in their children's character and education. Commenting on the development of the nations, he said that the urge to learn and acquire knowledge along with ethics, norms and values always help the nations to build up.

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National Book Day at Fountainhead School
Islamabad: The Fountainhead School celebrated National Book Day on its Islamabad and Rawalpindi campuses where reading sessions were held in all classes throughout the day.

Every child brought one of his or her favourite books to show, tell and read to his or her peers. The main idea was to create 'reading buddies' amongst the students. The classes were decorated with banners about reading, which included quotes like 'There is no friend as loyal as a book' and 'A book is a gift you can open again and again'.

Parents were invited to come and read their favourite books to their children and it was very encouraging to see their enthusiastic participation.

Activities like making bookmarks and posters on topics like 'Kitaab meri behtreen dost hai', 'We learn from books' and similar topics were also held. The Best Reader Certificates were awarded to the best reader of every class.

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NCA degree show
Lahore: The degree show of National College of Arts, Rawalpindi Campus graduates, was held at the Zahoor Akhlaq Gallery at the college on Friday. The show titled 'PASTICHE' was attended by a large number of artists, art teachers, students and social elite.

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PU MBBS result
Lahore: Punjab University on Friday announced the result of MBBS, second professional (Latest Re-Organised Scheme), supplementary exam 2011. The news

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LHC seeks reply on online registration of students
Lahore: Justice Muhammad Khalid Mehmood Khan of the Lahore High Court on Friday issued a notice to the Punjab government on a petition seeking implementation of recommendations given by a judicial commission about the online registration system of all eight education boards of the province.

The judge, with observation that grouping of education boards' officials had badly damaged the system, sought a reply from the provincial government within four weeks.

The petition was filed on behalf of the Pakistan Social Justice Forum. Counsel for the petitioner, Muhammad Azhar Siddique, submitted that after the failure of online system, a judicial commission had strongly recommended that both newly introduced online and old manual systems should be run parallel until an error-free system was established.

The counsel submitted that the education boards ignored these recommendations and awarded a Rs 300 million contract of online registration system to a private company. He said there was a possibility that students would suffer again this year. He requested the court to issue directions to the authorities concerned for strict implementation of the commission's recommendations. Daily times

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4,000 new schools to be built in Sindh
Karachi: As many as 4,000 new schools will be constructed in Sindh, said Minister for Education and Literacy, Pir Mazhar-ul-Haq.Chairing a meeting here on Friday, he said that these schools would be constructed in the province in the next three years with the assistance of the World Bank and other international bodies. The news

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