HEC tries to allay security concerns of foreign partners
ISLAMABAD, Aug 27: The Higher Education Commission (HEC) is actively
trying to persuade its foreign partners to implement their plans to set up of
nine engineering universities after they expressed concern over the worsening
security situation in the country.
According to a well-placed official,
two or three universities had planned to start academic activities from October
in rented buildings but the move was postponed till later next year.
government is funding the project. The management of the proposed universities,
including the vice-chancellor and the faculty, are to come from different
The project, costing between Rs250 and Rs300 billion
over the next 10 years, was first delayed by of the Lal Masjid operation and
subsequently by a series of suicide bombings, creating doubts about the project
Almost half of the countries involved in the project
have asked the HEC to inform them about the security arrangement during their
citizens' stay in Pakistan, the official said.
He said it was too early
to say anything about the projects' fate, but its current pace suggested that
its completion would definitely take more time.
HEC's executive director
Dr Sohail Naqvi said: "The setting up of nine world-class engineering
universities is not a small task. It will definitely take some
"Security is one of the major concerns and the HEC is taking all
possible steps to provide foolproof security to the faculty and their families
during their stay in Pakistan," Dr Naqvi said.
Expressing optimism about
the timely completion of the project, he said: "We are hopeful the universities
would start offering admissions by October next year," he said. Dawn