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Big universities & HEC directive

HEC directive baffles universities
Islamabad, Aug 17: BIG universities in Punjab and across the country are baffled by Higher Education Commission's directive to collect parliamentarians' matriculation and intermediate certificates as well as national identity card numbers and submit these to the commission.

Officials say they never allowed politicians access to universities during verification of their graduation degrees. However, the new directive from HEC is putting them before the politicians to ask them to give their matriculation and intermediate certificates and identity card numbers. "This is very strange," says a senior official at the Punjab University.

HEC has issued a formal direction to 10 universities in the country to contact the politicians whom they awarded graduation degrees and ask them to give copies of their matriculation and intermediate certificates for verification by HEC. The letter issued by HEC says this issue has been decided by the authority. It asks varsities to submit the required documents by August 25.

Senior officials of various universities say it is not their duty to contact parliamentarians and seek copies of their certificates. Punjab University officials said a copy of the identity card was not a requirement of the university before 2004. "Why the commission itself is not contacting parliamentarians and asking them to give copies of their certificates and identity cards?" asks a Punjab University official.

Officials say the government itself may write to education boards to get the copies of certificates and call Nadra to get identity card numbers. "We have nothing to do with the matriculation and intermediate certificates as well as identity cards," an official said.

A Punjab University official said the university verified graduation degrees of around 400 parliamentarians and it would be imprudent to expect from it that it would also locate matriculation and intermediate certificates of these MPs.

The official said this new exercise would just negate the graduation degrees' verification during which politicians were not allowed to have any contact with university officials. "No big university has responded to HEC's new demand but smaller universities are contacting parliamentarians for this purpose," he added.

Your Comments
"why universities issue degrees ,call them dubious later in verification process,if they issue it and degree is registered with proper serial number they must be bound to verify it,because whole process is scrutinized,and secrutineer must be caught and university must be accountable for it ,if some anomaly is found in the recard,they are destroying the career of the people owing to their negligence.University can quash the degree after 3 years not later than this according to rules but they are not folowing it and bringing bad name to degree holder who have nothing to play any role in the secrecy branch.Many innocent people are suffering owing to fault of universities and people concerned should take notice of it"
Name: mb khan
City, Country: khushab

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Degree verification: HEC unable to take action against its employee
Islamabad: Though the Higher Education Commission (HEC) claims to have the sole authority of determining the status of degrees, it has failed to take action against one of its own employees whose PhD has been proved dubious.

Moreover, doctorate degree of an assistant professor of a federal university has also been found fake, but the HEC officials despite knowing the wrong are keeping mum over the development.

The HEC has questioned PhD degree of Dr Shaheen Khan, the chairperson of Federal Board of Intermediate and Secondary Education (FBISE). Actually, according to the HEC's own inquiry, her claim of having done PhD from Karachi University has been proven wrong, sources close to the development said. However, they said, the HEC seemed reluctant to take up the case.

When contacted, HEC Chairman Dr Javed Leghari confirmed that Karachi University had been asked to clarify its position on the PhD thesis of Ms Khan. "It has been some time since HEC wrote to the Karachi University regarding FBISE chairperson's doctorate but it has yet to receive any response. Yes, as per our findings, her research work is not original," said the HEC chief. Ms Khan, who originally belongs to HEC, is currently holding the charge of FBISE along with the additional responsibility of Federal Directorate of Education (FDE) director-general.

Dr Leghari said the department concerned was following the degree issue of Ms Khan and in case the Karachi University failed to respond to HEC queries, the commission would take its own course of action.

The HEC is also facing lack of cooperation from International Islamic University (IIU) whose one assistant professor is holding PhD from a non-recognised American university. Actually, the US government has banned Kennedy-Western University.

Rashid Karim is working with the IIU as assistant professor on the basis of a degree which neither the US education authorities nor HEC accept. When asked, Dr Leghari said HEC's quality assurance department was in touch with the IIU over the issue. When contacted, IIU Vice-President Parveen Qadir Agha confirmed the anomalies surrounding the PhD degree of Mr Karim.

Defending the teacher, she said it was an issue of the HEC which didn't recognise the university from where the assistant professor had completed his PhD. "Even if Mr Karim's PhD is not accepted by the HEC, the IIU can keep him on the basis of his MS degree."

Discussion is also on within the HEC whether Dr Abdul Rauf Farooqi, who is working under the heavily-paid foreign faculty hiring programme, possessed enough genuine teaching experience. Dr Farooqi, who initially worked as FFHP professor at Allama Iqbal Open University, has now been shifted to IIU.

Dr Leghari also promised to look into the issue of Dr Farooqi. However, sources said in all the three cases, the people were well connected and it would not be easy for the HEC to take any action against them.

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Names of lawmakers with genuine degrees revealed
Islamabad: The names of the 247 lawmakers whose degrees have been declared as genuine by Higher Education Commission (HEC) after scrutiny have come to light.

The list of the lawmakers possessing genuine degrees that was recently handed over by the HEC to Election Commission (EC) contained the names of 31 Senators, 72 members of the National Assembly and 144 members of the provincial assemblies.

These lawmakers are among the 294 politicians whose educational qualifications have been scrutinised so far.

Prominent among the Senators who were given a clean chit were Interior Minister Rehman Malik, Finance Minister Dr Abdul Hafeez Sheikh, Privatisation Minister Waqar Ahmad Khan, Minister for Ports and Shipping Babar Khan Ghauri, Senate Chairman Farooq H. Naek, Deputy Chairman of Senate Jan Mohammad Jamali, PML-N Chairman Raja Mohammad Zafarul Haq, Chairman of PML (like-minded) Salim Saifullah Khan, S.M. Zafar (PML-Q), Maulana Abdul Ghafoor Hyderi (JUI-F), Prof Khursheed Ahmad (JI), Ilyas Ahmad Bilour (ANP), and Mian Raza Rabbani and Faisal Raza Abidi (PPP).

Other members of the Senate who were found to be holding genuine degrees included Sughra Imam, Safdar Ali Abbasi, Shahid Hasan Bugti, Ghufran Khan, Mushahidullah Khan, Haroon Khan, Abdul Razzaq, Semeen Siddiqui, Ahmad Ali, Dr Khatumal Jeewan, Shirala Malik, Abdul Rasheed, Mohammad Saleh Shah, Kalsoom Parveen, Hafiz Rasheed Ahmad, Rana Bhagwandas Chawla and Dr Abdul Khaliq Pirzada.

Education Minister Sardar Aseff Ahmad Ali's name was on top of the list of MNAs with genuine degrees. Other members of the cabinet on the list were Minister for Labour and Manpower Dr Farooq Sattar, Minister for Industries and Production Mir Hazar Khan Bijarani, Minister of State for Finance Hina Rabbani Khar, Minister of State for Foreign Affairs Malik Amad Khan, Minister of State for Ports and Shipping Nabeel Ahmad Gabol, and Adviser to the Prime Minister on Social Sector Shahnaz Wazir Ali.

Other members of the National Assembly given a clean chit included JUI chief Maulana Fazlur Rahman, former information minister Shehrbano (Sherry) Rehman, former interior minister Aftab Ahmad Khan Sherpao, Shahid Khaqan Abbasi, Ayaz Amir and Khurram Dastgir Khan (PML-N), Marvi Memon, Zobeida Jalal and Nousheen Saeed (PML-Q), Fouzia Wahab, Dr Azra Fazal Pecheho and Nafeesa Shah (PPP), and Haider Abbas Rizvi and Khushbakht Shujaat (MQM).

The names of Moonis Elahi and Shahan Malik were on the list of 37 members of the Punjab Assembly who were declared to be possessing genuine degrees.

The 71 members of the Sindh Assembly found to be having genuine degrees included Chief Minister Syed Qaim Ali Shah, Speaker Nisar Ahmad Khuhro, provincial ministers Shazia Marri, Shoaib Bokhari, Mohammad Adil Siddiqui, Syed Faisal Ali Sabzwari, Agha Siraj Khan Durrani, Nargis N.D. Khan and former chief minister Arbab Ghulam Rahim.

The 15 members of the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Assembly whose names were on the list were Sikandar Hayat Khan Sherpao, Ghani Dad Khan, Mehmood Alam, Karamatullah Khan, Said Rahim, Wajid Ali Khan, Waqar Ahmad Khan, Mohammad Ayub Khan, Muhammad Zahir Shah Khan, Saleem Khan, Mahmood Zaib Khan, Mohammad Humayun Khan, Noor Sahar, Dr Yasmin Jabeen and Makhdumzada Syed Murid Kazim Shah.

The 21 members of the Balochistan Assembly cleared by the HEC were Capt (retd) Abdul Khaliq Achakzai, Tariq Hussain Bugti, Sardar Mohammad Aslam Bizenjo, Abdul Rehman, Engineer Basant Lal Gulshan, Dr Ruqayya Saeed Hashmi, Asfandyar Khan, Mohammad Ismael Gujar, Jan Ali Changazai, Bibi Zarina, Husun Bano, Raheela Hameed Khan Durrani, Mir Shoaib Nosherwani, Mir Amanullah, Mir Mohammad Sadiq Umrani, Mir Salim Ahmad Khosa, Syed Ahsan Shah, Masood Ali Khan, Zafarullah Khan Zehri and Mir Mohammad Bakhtiar Khan Domki.

The last name on the list is that of former provincial minister Rubina Irfan. Interestingly, the HEC had included her name in the list of 47 lawmakers holding fake or invalid degrees as well.

The degrees of hundreds of legislators are still being scrutinised, not because their degrees are suspect but mainly because the accompanying documents required were either missing or incomplete.

The accompanying documents required are matric and intermediate certificates. Dawn

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NIP interns demands release of stipend before Eid
Islamabad: Interns working under the National Internship Programme (NIP) in various departments of twin cities of Islamabad and Rawalpindi are yet to get stipend. The internees have appealed to the concerned authorities to ensure the release of their stipend before Eid. It is the second time during fiscal year 2009-10 that payments to interns have been delayed for such a long period.

The programmes were meant to facilitate the unemployed graduates with stipend of Rs. 10,000 per month till they get some respectable jobs, but due to its non-payment their financial problems remain unaddressed.

A number of interns told APP that they could earn some money by working in private organisations.

Ishaq Khan one of the interns, said government had initiated the programmes to compensate unemployed educated youth financially. But, he regretted, they had yet to get a single month's stipend for the last five months.

A number of graduates working under the NIP expressed grave concern over the situation and said delayed payments had forced many interns to leave their jobs.

"Most of us belong to low-income group families. We can't afford even travel expenses for a month without a stipend," an intern Fouzia Jabeen said.

"The government must take notice of the issue and ensure timely release of stipend," she added.

An official of NIP said that the amount would be disbursed among NIP interns. He said the payment of the stipend was delayed due to the inquiry being conducted to ensure that they were not government employees.

He also claimed that some of the interns still have not opened their banks accounts which was causing delay in disbursement of stipend.

The minister has taken a serious notice of the news reports that in some areas stipends to NIP internees is not being paid timely, he added. App

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