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Urdu University fails to facilitate students

ISLAMABAD, Aug 27: Students of the Federal Urdu University of Arts, Science and Technology, Islamabad, are suffering from inadequate facilities and poor management.

A university official said that over 2,200 students were currently enrolled in Electrical Engineering, Computer Sciences, Economics, Business Administration, Statistics, Social Sciences, Environmental Studies and other disciplines. He said the university had failed to provide its students with the required facilities.

He said the university did not provide transport facilities for students coming from Rawalpindi. "The students had submitted a collective application seeking transport with the vice chancellor's (VC) office almost two years ago but no action has yet been taken in this regard," he said.

"The university does not consider it necessary to provide students with transport," he quoted VC Syed Iqbal Mohsin as saying. He said the university held classes in three shifts with the last shift closing at 8:00 pm, adding that the students who went home at night had to suffer because public transport was not frequent at night.

The university has five storeys. The official said two floors with 54 classrooms were reserved for classes while the administrative, faculty members and VC offices cover the remaining three floors. He said classes were not held properly because of lack of classrooms. An official at the Physics Department said the labs were not well equipped. "No one is ready to take responsibility to resolve the problems as no permanent VC has been appointed in the last six months," he said.

The students complained of hardships in finding residence as the university had no hostel. A female student said, "I am living in the Fatima Jinnah University Hostel because my university has no hostel."

The students complained of noise from at least 50 auto workshops set up around the university. They said they had to park their cars on the road because of inadequate parking space and that sometimes their cars were damaged. University Administration Officer Saeedullah Shah agreed that the students were facing problems and said the Higher Education Commission (HEC) had not released due funds to the university. He said the HEC had asked the university to resolve the problems on its own.

"These problems would not have surfaced had the university accepted the 85 flats offered by the Capital Development Authority (CDA) to set up its campus," he added. He said the flats could have been purchased at a reasonable price. "Now we are paying Rs 20 million rent of the present building and still the students are facing problems," he added. He said the university had to conduct classes in three shifts because of lack of classrooms. He said facilities like hostels could only be arranged if the university had its own building. Daily times
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