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Effects on students exams preparations

Students become victims of load shedding
Lahore, Jan 11: The unending suffering of the masses is now taking its toll on the most vulnerable segment of society, its students. Students from all over the city consider themselves the worst affected by load shedding, as frequent power outages have brought exam preparations to a near standstill.

Many say they feel like they are living in the Stone Age, and have effectively no time to study at home. Many students, particularly those who reside in hostels, are appearing for their supplementary examinations nowadays and complaining about the frequent power outages.

The city is facing about 6 to 8 hours of load shedding everyday, with some areas experience up to 10 to 20 hour power outages. A final year student at Fatima Jinnah Medical College (FJMC), Ammara, said that students sometimes use cell phone torches for preparation.

She complained that examiners and teachers do not understand their predicament, as they consider load shedding to be no excuse. "With so much load shedding, it is hard for me or any other student to study at night, which is the only time we have for college work. If this continues, I will not be able to get good grades."

Haris, an Intermediate student, said, "The current month is very important for us Intermediate students as we have exams coming up.

However, there is no fixed schedule of load shedding observed anywhere. This is badly affecting our studying schedules. It's depressing." Umer, a student of Punjab University, observed that students are serious victims of load shedding, and that the college administration has made no effort to consider the risk of load shedding and closed computer labs.

"We suffer a lot as we have to write assignments and use the Internet very frequently. Due to the semester system observed in our university, it becomes very difficult to maintain grades." Daily times

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Punjab medical colleges affiliation with UHS
Lahore: Trasnitions are never easy. The hiccups that remain in the half-decade long process of affiliating Punjab's medical colleges with the University of Health Sciences show how such efforts have to be sustained. The students of the Fatima Jinnah Medical College, a women-only institution in Lahore, are protesting daily against their institution's affiliation with the university.

They say that when they enrolled, they did so because they wanted to get their degree from the University of Punjab with which their college was then affiliated and that the college should not be affiliated with the University of Health Sciences, a process that has yet to be completed.

This argument is discriminatory if not implausible. All other medical colleges in Punjab, public and private, are already affiliated with the University of Health Sciences. How can the students of a lone college hold out without being seen as 'special'?

This, however, does not absolve the education authorities of blame. They created false hopes among the students that the Fatima Jinnah Medical College would become a university instead of having to change its affiliation. This could not come about because of administrative and financial constraints but it kept the college away from the affiliation process.

The officials also failed to convince the students that the changed affiliation would not hamper the international recognition of their degrees.

The result? The University of Punjab is maintaining a complete examination system for medical education for a single college. Now the issue is no longer under the education department's jurisdiction.

The Lahore High Court has taken suo motu notice of the protests and the court is expected to resolve the issue sooner rather than later. One hopes that it has also been noted that the provincial government has failed to successfully handle an issue that is minor compared to other challenges. Dawn

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School headmasters empowerment welcomed
Lahore: The recent decision of the Punjab School Education Department authorising school headmasters to surrender any teacher for poor performance is being seen as a positive development.

The empowerment of headmasters had always been a demand of the academics and teacher associations. The powerlessness of heads of institutions was thought to be the major hindrance in achieving better results and the best output from teachers. According to a notification issued last week, in case of unsatisfactory performance or conduct, the heads of elementary/ secondary/ higher secondary schools were authorised to surrender any of the teaching or non-teaching staff members to the respective transferring authority.

"The officer holding additional charge may also exercise this power provided said officer is not lower than a secondary school teacher in case of elementary or high school and not lower than a subject specialist in case of higher secondary school".

"The Transferring Authority shall adjust the surrendered incumbent in some other school", the notification concludes.

Sources in the department said upgradation of hundreds of government schools into English medium schools had prompted the high ups to take the decision to empower the school heads as they wanted results for success of this initiative. They added the move would help a lot in addressing the faculty issue as without good teachers the good initiative might become an embarrassment for the government.

However, academic circles are also critical of any misuse of this new power saying personal likes or dislikes may bring disastrous results. They are of the view that the department should also issue detailed guidelines to heads of the schools so that the misuse of power may be strongly discouraged to achieve the desired results.

Students are once again upset because of power crisis as ongoing loadshedding has been badly affecting academic activities both at homes and academic institutions.

The worst hit among the students are those studying computer sciences and those preparing for different upcoming examinations. They argue that the unavailability of electricity was adding to their problems.

The students urged the government to come up with long term planning and solution to the problem so that they might get rid of ugly power crisis which has been playing with their future for the last few years. The news

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NCA Student interaction
Lahore: Student-to-student interaction between India and Pakistan can help clear misconceptions in the minds of people on both sides of the border, say National College of Arts (NCA) students who have returned to the country after winning the Reubens Trophy, at the annual National Association of Students of Architecture (NASA) convention in Chennai, India.

A group of 25 students and NCA faculty member Mahmoodul Hasan Jafri participated in the convention. Students' exchange programs between the two countries should be held at a large scale so that they could get to know each other and learn from their experiences, the students said.

They said they were delighted to win the award at the convention in which participation seemed impossible initially. Winning this award has not only given us exposure but also gave us the confidence that we are not lacking behind, the students said.

Ruba Fauzan, an NCA student who was in charge of the group at the convention, said they were treated very nicely. "People in India are very keen to know about our film industry and are fond of our stage dramas," she said.

Anam Izhar, who was Fauzan's deputy, said, "We had a lot of fun at the event". She said the Indian students were cooperative and supportive throughout their visit. "For me, the most memorable part of the tour was our train journey from Delhi to Chennai." Commenting on her visit to the Taj Mahal, she said it was a beautiful monument and very well preserved.

Arsalan Rafique, another student who was part of the NCA group, said they gained a lot of exposure by participating in the NASA convention. He said he liked the street culture in India, particularly in Jaipur. "Apart from watching historical monuments, the street culture fascinated me a lot."

Bilal Saeed Malik, another student, said, the thing, which fascinated him the most about India was that Indian people stuck to their culture and used local products. He said, "When we got to Amritsar, it never felt like we were in some foreign country. It felt like being in Pakistan. Our hosts in India, particularly in Amristar were very courteous and hospitable," he said. Daily times

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Results of essay competitions
Lahore: The results of Chief Minister Punjab Essay Writing Competition have been announced.

In primary level Urdu essay writing competition among boys, Faizan Saeed Zubair of Model High School, Sajah Khanpur, stood first, Muhammad Jasam of Millat Public High School, Manan Wala, second and Hamad -ul -Hassan of Wapda Town, Gujranwala, third.

Among girls, Amna Zubair of Gulshan Public Middle School, Charl Goth, Bahawalpur, MahamTariq of Muslim Model High School, Zafar Wal and Sidra Ismaeel of Government Middle School, Muzafargarh, obtained first, second and third positions respectively.

In Middle Level Essay Writing among boys, Khalid Mahmood of Government Model High School, Bhakkar, was first, Hafiz Muhammad Umair-ul-Hassan of Government High School No1, Hasilpur, was second and Muhammad Bilal of Government Elementary School, Alipur, Muzafargarh, was third. Among girls, Mehvish Ghazanfar of Government MC Girls High School, Jaranwala, Memoona Kausar of Government Girls High School, Wajh Sahiwal and Ishrat Fatima of Government Girls MC High School, Arifwala, achieved first, second and third positions respectively.

In Middle Level English Essay writing among boys, Sheharyar Naeem of DPS, Sahiwal, stood first, Mohammad Ghayur of GHS, Muzzafargarh, second and Hamza Shabir Saeed of Public School, Sharaqpur Sharif, third.

Among girls, Komal Arif of Federal Science College, Gujranwala, Aqsa Arif of Government Model Girls High School, Multan, Zillehuma of DPS, Sahiwal, secured first second and third positions respectively. In Secondary Level Urdu Essay Writing among boys, Muhammad Billal of GHS, Jooni Vehari, stood first, Ali Abbas of Quide-e-Millat Public School, Jalalpur, second and Manzoor Jamshed Kamboh of GHS 39/SP Pakpattan secured third position.

Among girls, Aqsa Hayyat of GGHS Colony Area, Pakpattan, Samina Qamar of Quide-e-Millat Public School, Jalalpur Multan, and Ayesha Ladhi of GGHSS Khararianwala, Faisalabad, secured first, second and third positions respectively. The news

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GCU dean of sciences
Lahore: Punjab Governor Salmaan Taseer has appointed noted biotechnologist and Sitara-e-Imtiaz recipient Professor Ikramul Haq as Dean of the faculty of Science and Technology, a GCU press release said on Sunday.

Ikarm, who is currently director of the GCU Institute of Industrial Biotechnology received his post-doctorate degree from Cornell University, New York. His areas of research were microbiology and biotechnology. GCU Vice Chancellor Dr Khalid Aftab also congratulated Ikram on his appointment as dean. Daily times

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