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Karachi educational institutions deserted

Educational institutions wear deserted look
Karachi, Aug 05: Almost all officially open schools, colleges and universities wore a deserted look on Wednesday amid some of the worst incidents of violence that continued to paralyze life in the city for a third consecutive day and forced students and employees of government and private sector concerns, as well as other sections of society, to remain indoors.

Knowing that students and staff of educational institutions will not be able to travel to their respective school, college or university for obvious reasons, the Sindh government put the lives of all stakeholders at risk by ordering administrations of all these institutions in the city not to dare close their gates on Wednesday and Thursday.

The reasons included unavailability of transport means and fuel, fear and panic caused by the widespread violence and uncertain weather conditions with Met office forecasting rains any time in the first two weeks of this month.

The authorities concerned, when asked if they could consider the ground reality, maintained that they did not find any of the grounds convincing.

They seemed to have tested their own writ and that of the relevant departments that appeared confident that the law-enforcement agencies are fully capable of maintaining law and order and ensure availability of all essentials to keep the city life normal.

However, parents of schoolchildren, in an apparent expression of no-confidence in the ability of the government and law-enforcement agencies, preferred not to send their wards to schools on Wednesday. Youthful students and most employees of all age groups also did not risk their lives and chose to stay at their homes.

A few government schools and colleges complied with Sindh chief secretary's order to keep them open but neither more than five per cent students could make it nor the vehicles meant for transporting students could do their normal business. Attendance of the staff was also thin.

According to reports, those institutions which were opened in the morning were closed by 10 or 11am.

Attendance at the Karachi University and NED University of Engineering and Technology was also 5 to 6 per cent and no point buses could be operated.

The authorities, however, insisted that educational institutions across the province must remain open on Thursday.

Sindh Education Secretary Alam Din Bullo said on Wednesday night that "all educational institutions of the city as well as other parts of the province will remain open on Thursday."

A large number of people making calls to Dawn to ask whether the educational institutions are open or closed on Thursday, also questioned that should they put lives of their children at risk. Some of them asked how they could send their children to their schools when school vans were not operating.

Operators of school vans and college buses said that they could not run their fleets for want of fuel as petrol pumps across the city remained closed since Monday evening.

"Moreover, there was security risk as a large number of vehicles were torched just in the last two days," they said, adding that drivers of the vehicles also feared for their lives.

Parents of many students using their own cars or bikes were asked whey they did not send their wards to their educational institutions on Wednesday. They spoke of similar risks.

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Private schools
Karachi: Chairman of the All Pakistan Private Schools Management Association Syed Khalid Shah announced on Wednesday evening that private schools in Karachi would not be opened on Thursday on account of the prevailing law and order situation in the city. Dawn

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Private schools to remain closed
Karachi: The private schools' association announced on Wednesday that all the schools in the metropolis will remain closed on Thursday (today). This decision was taken keeping in view the worsening law and order situation in the city.

However, when contacted, the governor house spokesman denied issuing of any such notification in this regard.

Despite the government's announcement to reopen public and private schools and colleges on Wednesday, thin attendances was reported in the education department and educational institutions in the city.

Regardless of the statement released late Tuesday night to open schools and colleges, parents and guardians preferred not to send their children to the school. The late night cases of violence, which reportedly claimed around 19 more lives, was one of the major reasons behind their decisions.

On the other hand, the employees of education departments including provincial, local government and others could not manage to join their offices on Wednesday. The staff were hit by the acute fuel shortage. The tense law and order situation in some parts of the city was another factor of their absence. The news

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Karachi University postponed LLM, MBBS papers
Karachi: The University of Karachi on Wednesday announced that the LLM annual and MBBS third professional (supplementary) examinations-2010 scheduled for August 5 have been postponed and rescheduled.

According to the new schedule, the LLM paper-III (previous) human rights, paper-IV (final) shipping law and paper-IV (previous) cooperative study of Islamic and western jurisprudence will now be held on Aug 10, 11 and 12, respectively.

The MBBS supplementary paper, ophthalmology (eye) new course and old course, will be held on Aug 12. app

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SALU, SU to generate funds after budget cuts
Khairpur: The Shah Abdul Latif University (SALU) has decided to generate its own resources for meeting the shortfall after cut in its budget, pay 50 per cent of the amount of enhanced salaries and 15 per cent of the increased medical bills of its employees.

The decisions were taken in a meeting of all departmental heads with the university's Vice-Chancellor Prof Dr Nilofer Shaikh, here on Wednesday.

The meeting noted that there would be a shortfall of Rs244 million after a slash in budget 2010-11 and SALU itself would deal with the situation.

A committee headed by Salu's Pro-Vice-Chancellor was formed to review fund generation while it appealed to President and Prime Minister to re-allocate funds for the university so that the ongoing development, research and academic work could be continued and new schemes, which were in abeyance, could be approved.

The meeting was attended by presidents of SALU Teachers' Society and University Employees Welfare Association and faculty of Commerce and Business Administration.

Our Hyderabad bureau adds: The University of Sindh has decided to implement new timings from 9am to 5pm with immediate effect in all teaching and administrative departments and work out a plan for generating resources for meeting the challenges of reduction in its budget.

This was decided at a meeting of the Vice-Chancellor Executive Council on Wednesday.

Vice Chancellor, Prof Dr Nazir A. Mughal briefed the meeting about the verification of degrees of parliamentarians, received from the Higher Education Commission.

He said the university received 129 degrees which were verified as per criteria set by the HEC and were returned within the due date.

It also discussed protests organised by two groups of employees of the university.

The Vice Chancellor has reportedly directed the groups to follow rules and regulations and avoid protest, and administration to resolve genuine problems of employees without any pressure. Dawn

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