Year 2008, gloomy year for education sector
2008 proves to be gloomy year for education sector
Lahore, Dec 30: educational institutions, teachers and students faced various problems
due to shortage of funds and energy crisis in 2008.
The year saw students
on roads – fighting for their rights – and other problems in the education
sector in Punjab.
January: The year started with a wave of terror, as
academic activities were disturbed due to a suicide blast at GPO Chowk on
January 11. Low attendance was observed in the institutions, and students and
teachers feared security risks inside schools and colleges. Students were
already disturbed due to the assassination of Pakistan People's Party chairwoman
Benazir Bhutto, and were simultaneously participating in protests for the
restoration of the judiciary.
February: In February, private schools
issued a 22-point Charter of Demand to the government. The All Pakistan Private
Schools Welfare Association (APPSWA) issued the charter, demanding the
government solve the problems.
During this month, university teachers
from across the province protested several times against former Punjab governor
Lt Gen (r) Khalid Maqbool after he forced some teachers charged with plagiarism
March: A five-day LUMS Olympiad was held on March 4,
participated by students from across the country, but a bomb blast on at the
Pakistan Navy War College shook the city once again, creating an environment of
fear. Panic griped the city on March 11 after another blast at the Federal
Investigation Agency (FIA) building and another one in Model Town Society, as
many students of Sacred Heart School, Saint Anthony's High School, and Cathedral
Public School were killed and injured in the incident. Following this, the
school administrations announced holidays and security at schools became an
April: After Prime Minster Yousuf Raza Gilani announced to lift
the ban on students unions, students openly resumed their activities at colleges
and universities, but the teaching community opposed the decision. Traditional
union politics started and the MAO College was closed for some time after an
incident of gunfight between two unions.
May: Hundreds of Kinnarid
College students protested against the varsity administration in first week of
May for revising their fee structure. The Punjab University remained closed for
four days from May 12 to stop the Islami Jamiat Talaba from holding a parallel
book fair. The PU administration held a book fair and called on heavy security
to stop IJT from taking over the event, which also disturbed the academic
environment of the university.
June: Load shedding touched its peak in
June, due to which students faced immense problems in preparing for their
examinations. The students of various institutions also protested against load
Later, students of the Lahore College for Women University
(LCWU) Designs and Visual Arts Department protested against Vice Chancellor Prof
Dr Bushra Mateen who wanted to hold their viva exam again. The students also
approached the chancellor, Governor Salmaan Taseer to get the issue
July: The worst episode for the public sector universities of
the country was the 'financial crunch' that took place as the Federal Finance
Ministry refused to release the Higher Education Commission's (HEC) fourth
quarterly instalment of development and recurring grant of over Rs 8
A big plan of 'Tenure Track System' flopped in various public
sector universities following the crunch, and the plans of raising employees'
salaries and sending students on foreign scholarships also had to be
August: Matriculation, intermediate and BA/BSC results were
declared in August. The percentage of result of FA and BA/ BSc was comparatively
lower than the previous year and students and teachers blamed load shedding for
However, many students rejoiced and distribute sweets on the
departure of former president Pervez Musharraf in this month.
More than 20,000 students from across the Punjab sat for the admissions test of
public and private medical colleges on September 4, and students of O and A
levels also protested against Inter Board Committee of Chairmen (IBCC) on its
equivalence formula for the admission to medical colleges.
21, a bag containing ammunition, hand grenades and Kalashnikovs was found at the
PU. The US and UK visa centres were also closed in this month following security
risks, due to which students going abroad for higher education
October: In October, 1,862 FSc students from Punjab were
declared eligible for admission to nine public colleges, while students of A and
O levels continued their protests.
November: A number of intuitions in
the city started campaigns for the relief of the victims of Balochistan
Students also protested at various corners of the city after
the announcement of PU Examination Department to hold BA/BSc Examination 2009 a
month prior to the previously scheduled date.
Forman Christian College
University (FCCU) Commencement 2008 and GCU's convocations were held in last
week of the month.
December: In first week of the month, students of 17
universities of the province participated in the first 'Munir Niazi Award' at
the Governor's House and presented their poetry. IJT activists in PU opened fire
on the University Students Federation activists, injuring seven students.
The third BNU and 116th PU convocations were held, in which Governor
Salmaan Taseer distributed degrees and awards among the graduates. Daily Times
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Khyber Medical University MBBS exams from Jan 12
Peshawar: Khyber Medical University has made an announcement for suspension of
supplementary examinations of MBBS and BDS final year scheduled to be held on
1st of January of the new year in respect of Muharram. A press release issued by
the spokesman of university on Monday, said the supplementary examinations of
MBBS and BDS final year scheduled to be held simultaneously in Khyber Medical
College Peshawar, Ayub Medical College, Abbotabad ,Sado Medical College Swat,
Gomal Medical College Dera Ismail Khan and Khyber Medical College of Dentistry
on the 1st of January 2009 were suspended. These examinations would now be held
on January 12, the press release concluded. Afp
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CM promises to investigate PU hostel shooting
Lahore: The government will provide full protection to students and no one will
be allowed to adversely affect the academic atmosphere in educational
institutions, Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif said on Monday.
talking to a group of students after delivering his presidential address at a
three-day international conference at Punjab University (PU). He said it was the
government's responsibility to establish a peaceful academic atmosphere in all
public sector educational institutions.
Students' protest: United
Students Federation (USF) members present at the campus protested against the
Islami Jamiat Talaba and chanted slogans. The USF demanded the chief minister
grant them justice, as the assailants who fired and tortured students at hostel
number 16 on November 3 had not been arrested. They complained the first
information report filed against them had not been investigated. Upon hearing
this, the CM announced to establish a commission for thorough investigation of
the incident, and vowed to arrest those involved.
He said no one was
above the law, adding that culprits will be brought to justice irrespective of
International conference: Addressing the conference titled
'History, Politics and Society: The Punjab', Shahbaz said the Punjab government
has allocated a high priority to educational reforms, provision of healthcare
facilities and quick dispensation of justice to the masses.
research papers would be reviewed at the conference by national and foreign
He appreciated the efforts of PU Vice Chancellor Dr Mujahid
Kamran and History Department Chairman Qalbe Abid for organising an
international conference. He hoped this moot would help highlight Punjab's
importance and glory in the region, adding that government had set aside 10
percent of its annual budget for education reforms. Dr Kamran said the chief
minister's presence at the conference showed his commitment to education and
research. Dr Abid highlighted the objectives of the conference and hoped it
would host fruitful discussion and meaningful analyses.
Gilmartin from North Carolina State University said the rule of law was of
utmost importance in the British-ruled Punjab as well as in the Pakistani
Punjab. Daily Times
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