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Call to support private varsities
Lahore, Aug 10: Speakers at a seminar appreciating the role of private sector in higher education urged the government to support private universities besides simplifying the process of awarding charter to higher education institutes working in private sector.

The seminar "Quality Education-Private Sector: Problems and Solutions" organised by the Mir Khalil ur Rahman Memorial Society (Jang Group of Newspapers) in collaboration with the University of Lahore at a local hotel on Monday. It was addressed by over a dozen senior educationists.

Parliamentary Secretary for Health and Chairman Chief Minister's Task Force on Spurious Drugs Dr Saeed Elahi said the government was aware of private sector's contribution in the field of higher education as it had been supporting the government over the years.

Saying that the government should support the private sector, he assured the recommendations of the seminar including provision of government land to private varsities on controlled rate besides to facilitate higher education institutions in awarding of charters. He said the same would be presented to the Punjab government.

University of Engineering & Technology (UET) Lahore Vice Chancellor Lt-Gen (Retd) Muhammad Akram Khan said over the years the government could not provide requisite number of educational institutions which gave rise to private sector institutions in the country. He termed the nationalization of private educational institutions a big blow to private sector adding the mistake was finally rectified in 1983. UET VC also termed accountability system, hiring and firing authority and corporate system of management of private institutions as their strong points. He expressed concerns over cut in budget of Higher Education Commission (HEC) saying the government varsities were facing difficulties to continue offering subsidized education. Secretary of the Literacy and Non Formal Basic Education Department Punjab Allah Bakhsh Malik said the private sector was invited as the government alone could not fulfil its responsibility of providing education. He said since the private sector was sharing responsibility with the government it needed to be facilitated as well.

American International School System (AISS) Principal Mark Rozic termed investment in education sector the most beneficial adding role of private sector in the field of education varied from country to country. Dean of Punjab University's (PU) Faculty of Education Prof Dr Hafiz Muhammad Iqbal said it was unfortunate that standard of education of both private and public varsities was not good and there was need to improve the same.

PU Registrar Prof Dr Muhammad Naeem Khan said the varsity while realizing the fact private sector should share the burden had liberalized its territorial jurisdiction.

University of Lahore Rector Dr Saleem Shuja said private sector played an important role in the field of education even before the creation of Pakistan. He said the government must realize that education targets could not be achieved without supporting private sector.

Pakistan Medical & Dental Council (PMDC) Registrar Dr Ahmad Nadeem Akbar said 30,000 to 40,000 candidates appear in tests for 7500 MBBS and BDS seats adding the rest would definitely go to Central Asia and other countries where the quality of education was not as good as in Pakistan.

Rector GIFT University, Gujranwala Dr Iqbal Tahir said the country had witnessed a number of policies but it was unfortunate that not a single policy could be implemented in toto.

University of Lahore's Board of Governors Chairman MA Raoof said the varsity was offering programmes in many disciplines which were approved by respective regulatory bodies including PMDC, Pakistan Engineering Council (PEC) and Pharmacy Council of Pakistan etc.

University of Lahore Vice Chancellor Prof Dr M H Qazi, Government Post Graduate College for Women, Samanabad, Principal Prof Dr Tasneem Akhtar and Adnan Khan from NIB also spoke on the occasion. MKRMS Chairman Wasif Nagi hosted the seminar. The news

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UET budget approved
Lahore: The University of Engineering and Technology's (UET) Senate on Monday approved the recurring and development budget for the year 2010-11.

UET Vice-Chancellor Muhammad Akram Khan, as nominee of the chancellor, presented annual report and briefed the Senate members on academic and research activities, administrative matters and mega projects of the university.

Meanwhile, UET Senate members elected Prof Dr Abdul Sattar Shakir and Prof Dr Khalid Mahmoodul Hasan as Senate members. Prof Dr Neelam Naz was elected unopposed as finance member for three years.

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PUSAS protest
Lahore: The Punjab University Academic Staff Association (PUASA) has condemned the incident of hurling life threats and using harsh words against Institute of Plant Pathology in charge Dr Ghazala Nasim by an ex-student of the institute.

In a joint statement issued on Monday, PUASA Secretary-General Javed Sami and vice-president Majid Rana demanded that the varsity administration should take strict action against offender Tariq Manzoor, a former student of the Institute.

They also demanded of the university administration to sternly deal with the offending student and get an FIR registered against him.

Dr Nasim has also submitted a written complaint to the vice-chancellor for initiating a legal action against the offender and provision of security to her.

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PU results
Lahore: The PU on Monday declared the results of MA English, semester system, session 2008-10 and MA History (morning programme), semester system, session 2008-10. Dawn

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BISE PRO sacked over mismanagement
Lahore: Board of Intermediate and Secondary Education Chairman Akram Kashmiri, on Monday, removed from office Public Relation Officer Qaiser Virk on mismanagement at the matriculation prize distribution ceremony.

Kashmiri said that Virk had been sacked, and a notification issued to him regarding his removal. Separately, Sidra Amir, research and coordination officer at BISE, has been given the additional charge of PRO. "We are doing our best to cleanse and upgrade the institution and will not bear any negligence on part of officials", the chairman said.

Recently, a tense situation had erupted at the matriculation prize distribution ceremony, where students, parents and journalists protested against the BISE mismanagement. According to sources, Qaiser Virk was responsible for the mismanagement and that he was technically not qualified for the post, as he is a graduate of psychology and was wrongly appointed during the tenure of Pervaiz Elahi.

Virk, however, said he had not received any notification from BISE, adding that he is aware that BISE holds him responsible for the mismanagement. Daily times

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