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Punjab Boards increase 33% in admission fee

BISEs approve 33 per cent increase in admission fee
Lahore, Aug 29, 2008: The Punjab Board Committee of Chairmen (PBCC) has approved 33 per cent increase in admission fee being charged by all the eight education boards of the province. It also approved 45 to 50 per cent increase in remuneration of supervisory and evaluation staff of the education boards. A summary will soon be sent to the Punjab government for formal approval in this regard.

A meeting of the PBCC was held at the Board of Intermediate and Secondary Education (BISE), Lahore, on Thursday in which chairmen of all the eight BISEs of the province and BISE Azad Jammu and Kashmir (AJ&K) participated.

A participant of the meeting, seeking anonymity, said most of the BISEs had been expressing concerns over lack of availability of supervisory as well as evaluation staff during the exams, adding that the boards had to face problems because of meagre remuneration being paid to such staff. He said unlike the education boards, the universities were paying a handsome remuneration to examination staff owing to which they were not facing such problems.

"A consensus was developed among the participating boards that admission fee should be increased to raise the remuneration of examination staff in order to attract the required staffers such as superintendent, deputy superintendent, invigilators, mobile inspectors, distributing inspectors, resident inspectors, paper evaluators and paper setters," he said, adding that a subcommittee was formed during the previous meeting of the PBCC on 21 June to submit its recommendations regarding increase in admission fee and remuneration. He said (BISE) Gujranwala Chairman M Akram Chaudhry was appointed convener of the committee while BISE Dera Ghazi Khan Chairman Mehr Bashir Ahmed and BISE Multan Chairman Nawaz Javed were appointed as the committee members.

He said the subcommittee presented its recommendations on Thursday which were unanimously approved by the meeting, adding that the committee had recommended increase in remuneration of paper checking from Rs 16 per copy to Rs 20 per copy for matriculation while for intermediate it recommended Rs 22 per copy from Rs 18.

The meeting of BISEs chairmen agreed to implement the government decision regarding the start and end of the academic session and it was decided that the session would be observed from April 1 to March 31 each year. It was also decided that the matter regarding conduct of examinations as per the new academic session would be taken up in next meeting of the PBCC.

The meeting also took up the issue regarding complaint of BISE AJ&K against the BISE Lahore and asked the member boards to complete the marking of answer sheets within the stipulated period of time in future.

According to details, the BISE AJ&K had complained that under the exchange programme the BISE Lahore had failed to return its answer books in time this year. It had further stated that such a delay was never observed in the history of the boards owing to which it had to face a lot of problems. The BISE Lahore maintained, in its defence, that the delay was partly because of the BISE AJ&K itself and partly because of lack of evaluation staff. The Lahore board observed that the packets, comprising answer books, were not sent in order by the AJ&K board which had caused some delay in sorting out the material.

However, BISE Lahore Secretary Haji Muhammad Dogar, when contacted, said his board had not delayed the return of the answer books to the AJ&K board, adding that the latter was demanding answer books much before the time limit set by the PBCC.

"We returned the answer books before the time limit," he said, adding that the BISE AJ&K announced the results of Intermediate Part-I Annual Examination on August 20 while the rest of boards under the PBCC had already agreed to announce the same result on September 15.

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Bahauddin Zakariya University (BZU) Students furnish the media with 'evidence': Sexual harassment
Multan: Rejecting the verdict of a two-member committee of the Bahauddin Zakariya University's syndicate, two alleged sexual harassment victims on Thursday showed up at a press conference and produced "evidence corroborating their claim".

The CDs the two psychology department students distributed among the journalists had the recorded statement of a female teacher having admitted that the girls were forced to take off their clothes.

The two-member inquiry team had dismissed the application on Aug 23 with the observation that the allegations levelled by the students were false and lacked substance.

"The biased and unfair decision has made us hold a press conference and make public the recorded material proving the allegations," the girls said.

They alleged that the university administration was trying to absolve the five teachers of the crime they (the academics) had committed.

They also accused the inquiry committee members of using derogatory language against them.

The students said they had produced the recorded material before the inquiry committee, but it still claimed that they (the victims) had failed to give substantive material to prove their allegations.

They declined committee's offer to appear again in the paper during which they were 'caught cheating'. They demanded constitution of a committee that could impartially probe the matter.

The two students had submitted a complaint to the BZU vice-chancellor on June 13, claiming that they were attempting their psychotherapy paper (on May 23) when invigilators, on the pretext of cheating, stopped them from continuing with the examination and sexually harassed them in a private room. The News

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Students packed like sardines in school vans
Lahore: Overloaded school vans plying the city streets have become a dangerous nuisance for the students concerned, parents said on Tuesday.

The parents claimed that they were paying huge transportation charges to the vehicle owners, while drivers claimed that they had to overload their vehicles or suffer losses.

Most van owners do not let others provide services to their areas and students are forced to travel in overcrowded vans. The Education Department has no check on the van owners in this regard.

Khaleeda Anjum, mother of a schoolgirl, said, "My daughter goes to school in a van. Last week, she got her leg fractured in a traffic accident, because a rickshaw hit the overcrowded van from behind."

Rana Aslam, a father, said, "Due to overloading, my son was forced to stand in the van. When the van applied brakes at full speed, he suffered a head injury."

Yasmeen Kausar, a teacher, said, "Students have no other option but to travel in the vans, which add to their misery."

Raheela, a college student, said, "When we complain about overcrowded vans, the drivers misbehave with us."

Lahore College for Women University spokeswoman Anjum Zia said, "Hundreds of girls travel in private vans, but we have no control over the pick-and-drop service providers."

Muhammad Jamil, a van driver, said, "Due to the skyrocketing fuel prices, we have no option but to overload our vans. However, it is the van's owner who decides how many students will travel in any given van."

Responsibility: Education Department Additional Secretary (Schools) Khalid Abbass said, "If any student suffers an accident while travelling in a private van, the responsibility lies with the parents and the van owners, not the government."

Action: District Co-ordination Officer Sajjad Bhutta said that the Traffic Department should take action against those van owners who overload their vehicles.

Senior Superintendent of Police (Traffic) Hussain Habib Imtiaz also said that they could take action against the school vans on the charges of overloading. Daily Times

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