7th International Islamic University convocation

IIUI convocation: Around 2,285 degrees were conferred on students
Islamabad, July 13: Prime Minister Syed Yousuf Raza Gilani on Sunday said that the PPP government was a proponent of education and was striving to translate the dream of the late Zulfikar Ali Bhutto and Benazir Bhutto of 'progress through education' into reality.

Addressing the 7th convocation of the Islamic International University, Islamabad, (IIUI) at the Convention Centre here, Gilani said institutions like IIUI could make a significant contribution towards restoring the true image of Islam and normalising relations with other civilizations. "Seeking education is the religious duty of every Muslim, as it not only helps in refining and harnessing human faculties, but also acts as an agent of change and progress," the premier said.

Lauding the expansion and inclusion of modern disciplines, especially science and technology, engineering, computer sciences and social sciences in the university's curriculum, Gilani said the university was developing into one of the best international centers of learning for students from all over the world, especially from the brotherly Muslim countries.

"In spite of the fact that we have inherited a crippled economy and are engaged in a struggle against religious extremism and militancy within our borders leading to a big drain on our resources, the government has increased the budgetary allocation for education from Rs 24.4 billion to Rs 31.1 billion in the current budget," he said.

The prime minister announced Rs 450 million for construction of a boarding house of the university and Rs 1 million for the students who topped in the examinations. "Higher education has also been given due priority. Development funding to Higher Education Commission has been enhanced by 60 percent to Rs 22.5 billion in addition to Rs 21.5 billion for the current budgetary provision, representing an increase of 26 percent over the previous year," he added.

IIUI Rector Prof Fateh Muhammad Malik and President Dr. Anwar Hussain Siddiqui highlighted the progress made by the university.

Award ceremony: The prime minister awarded gold medals to the students who topped in different subjects. Around 2,285 degrees were conferred on students out of which six students got their Ph.D degrees, 195 M.Phil/MS, 961 MA, MBA/M.Sc and 1,123 got bachelors degrees.

A total number of 1,236 boys and 1,049 girls received the accolade. On the occasion, 34 gold medals were also awarded to students of which 22 medals were awarded to female students and 12 medals to male students for their outstanding performance in academics. The students of Faculty of Management (SFM) received 8 gold medals, which is highest in the university's history by any department. Daily Times

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New block completed on self-help basis
Rawalpindi: New block of Institute of Psychiatry at Benazir Bhutto Hospital would be operational during August, as construction work on it has been completed while installation of necessary furniture and equipment is in progress.

"We have decided to invite Punjab Chief Minister Mian Shahbaz Sharif for inauguration of the block on August 14," said Head of Institute of Psychiatry Professor Dr. Fareed Aslam Minhas on Sunday. He added that for the purpose, he had sent a written request to the CM through the office of principal Rawalpindi Medical College and in-charge Allied Hospitals.

He said that construction work inside the new block has been finalised and air conditioners are being installed presently. "Installation of equipment and furniture in the new block is also in progress," he added.

To a query, he however said that the institute is shifting its used furniture and equipment from old block to the new block to make it functional. He said that he had demanded the BBH administration to provide new furniture and equipment for the new block. "The hospital administration has promised to provide the institute new furniture within this fiscal year, however, no final date has been announced in this regard as yet," he said.

The institute had to complete construction work on new block solely on self-help basis as the government contributed not a single penny for the project at the BBH, a provincially administered government hospital named after former chairperson of Pakistan People's Party.

"The construction of new block covering a total area of 30,000 square feet cost around Rs50 million of which the institute collected slightly above Rs12 million through public donations," said Dr. Minhas. He however added that he would be able to provide all details in this regard at the time of inauguration of the block.

The Institute of Psychiatry based at the BBH is considered as one of the most prestigious institutes in the country being the WHO Collaborating Centre for Mental Health Research and Training in whole of the East Mediterranean Region and a teaching institution of Rawalpindi Medical College, however, the government has never given due attention to its upgradation.

The institute is the only compact psychiatry department in this region of the country that also covers all prisons in Rawalpindi division. It was established in 1973. It is not only providing treatment to patients visiting BBH but also running outreach programmes on regular basis. It is important that a part of the existing building of the department that is going to be replaced by the new block was also built through donations.

Giving details of the facilities planned in the newly constructed two-storey block, Dr. Minhas said that a total of 14 consultation rooms have been constructed at the ground floor for outdoor adult and adolescent psychiatric patients with adequate seating arrangements. "An Electro Convulsive Treatment (ECT) suite consisting of a procedure room, recovery room and waiting area has also been established at the ground floor," he said.

He added that the first floor of the new block would house teaching, academic and research cell for which two teaching rooms and a conference room having modern audio-visual equipment have been established.

Dr. Minhas said that shifting of consultation rooms from old block to the new block would provide space for developing general adult indoor ward, child and adolescent indoor facilities and old age indoor ward. "For the purpose, renovation work in the old block has already been initiated," he said. He added that a drug detoxification unit would also be established in the old block. The News

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