HEC ranked PU second best after QAU
Lahore, July 30: The Higher Education Commission has ranked the Punjab University the second best varsity among general universities in the country in terms of research publications, faculty development, student strength and other factors. It is at the top in Lahore.
The Punjab University has scored 45.92 per cent marks allocated for research, students, facilities, finances and faculty, after the Quaid-i-Azam University, Islamabad, with a score of 58.16.
The Government College University is ranked sixth in general universities in the country and second in Lahore with 31.78 score. The Lahore College for Women University has been ranked 15th in the country and third among general universities in Lahore with 20.99 score.
The GCU had earlier stated that the HEC had ranked it the top university in terms of research output. However, the revised ranking of universities shows that the GCU, Lahore scored 6.44 out of 26 marks allocated for research, while the Punjab University scored 10.49 in the category.
Speaking at a press briefing at the Punjab University's Executive Club on Thursday, Vice-Chancellor Prof Dr Mujahid Kamran said he had kept his focus on research and creation of new knowledge in the institution. He said he had enhanced allocation for research from Rs8 million in 2007-08 to Rs50 million in 2008-09 and kept it at same volume during the 2009-10 financial year.
He said the university had a budget volume of Rs4.11 billion out of which it was generating 70 per cent revenue from its own resources. Despite financial cut this year, Prof Kamran said the university had decided to keep research allocation at Rs50 million during the financial year by slashing unnecessary expenditure.
Owing to this vision, he said, the PU had attained second position among general universities in the country. It bagged fourth and fifth positions in 2005-07 and 2007-08, respectively.
"Acquiring higher ranking has motivated the university faculty members as they have shown commitment to do research with more dedication," he said.
Prof Kamran said the PU's ranking would further improve if the HEC recognised its various research journals being produced with quality content. He said the university's PhD programme had also been strengthened and he hoped that the consistency in this policy would help university achieve 90 per cent PhD faculty by 2020.
Answering a question about the stated preference to foreign PhDs compared with the local degree holders for the posts of vice-chancellors in various universities, Prof Kamran said this was a wrong attitude on the part of the Higher Education Department. He said the scholars doing their PhDs locally were required to send their theses and research papers abroad for evaluation.
About four-year BS (Honours) programme, Pro-Vice-Chancellor Prof Dr Jamil Anwar said the public-sector colleges lacked infrastructure and faculty to run the programme. He also told the media that the higher education secretary responded in the affirmative when he asked whether the subjects other than those being included in honours programme would be closed.
He said the semester system was earlier introduced in the late 70s but was disbanded for "not being feasible". Prof Anwar said the university had decided that it would not offer affiliation to the six public-sector colleges attached to it unless they would develop the required level of infrastructure.
He said the matter of holding examinations and weightage of marks given to college and university teachers would also be discussed. He admitted that currently the higher education department had proposed 40 per cent weightage for college teachers and 60 per cent for the examination to be conducted by the university.
He said he had called a meeting of heads of respective departments on Friday (today) to discuss the issue of introduction of honours programme, while a meeting of attached colleges' principals had been called on Saturday (tomorrow).
Answering a question, Prof Kamran agreed that the university would consider revising the semester examination system and recommend that more than one question-paper would be prepared. DawnYour Comments
Bilal Jamaee wanted to be buried at KU
Karachi: Bilal Jamaee, one of the plane crash victims, often used to tell his friends that he wanted to be buried at a graveyard situated in the University of Karachi after his death. According to the Jamaee's peers, this desire rose from the love and fondness he had for his educational institution.
"Due to his attachment with the university, he wished to be buried there. It is so saddening that his life came to an end even before he would graduate from the university.
His classmates have filed an application to the administration seeking permission for his burial at the KU graveyard," said Ahsan Raza, a friend of the deceased. However, till the filing of this report, Jamaee's father Naseer Rajput was still awaiting a response from the administration regarding this matter.
Bilal Jamaee was amongst the 152 passengers and crew aboard the doomed Airblue flight 202 which crashed into the Margalla hills on Wednesday. The 25-year-old, who was a third-year BS student of the Mass Communications Department, was heading for a Youth Parliament session, participating in it as a Youth Shadow Minister for Information.
Jamaee's body was brought to his hometown on Thursday and will be buried today after Friday prayers.
"Bring my brother back. I just want to see him one last time," cried Jamaee's younger sister, Ayesha. "A single glimpse of him would also do. I had not seen him for eight days since I, my mother and younger sister had gone to Rahim Yar Khan to tend to my grandmother. It was wrong of us to go."
Recalling the last conversation she had with her brother, Ayesha said that it was on the early morning of July 28 when her brother called and asked about the whereabouts of the money saved for the Islamabad trip. "I was so sleepy that I did not even talk to him properly," she said amidst tears.
Ayesha now cherishes the last text message which was sent by her brother. The message reads: "Good luck and tc.". She is unable to comprehend as to why he wished her luck.
Meanwhile, a large number of Jamaee's classmates, teachers, friends and acquaintances visited the traumatised family to express their condolences at their residence in Rabia City, Gulistan-e-Jauhar.
A university friend remarked on the brave attitude of the young man, saying: "When Bilal was rejected for admission to the Mass Communications Department, he took the matter to the Sindh High Court and fought the case for one year after which he was successfully transferred. He challenged the entire administration and remained steadfast on his right stance."
Jamaee's father, Naseer Rajput said that he was extremely proud of his son for becoming so successful at such a young age. "Amongst the Youth parliamentarians, including Oxford students, my son confidently delivered his speeches in Urdu. The mother tongue was his greatest strength. Recently, he came back from a trip to the UK, where he got the chance to visit the House of Commons. He was a great writer and wrote several stories. He was apolitical and was a great student and an active participant in extra-curricular activities," said Rajput, a retired public relations officer. According to him, Bilal changed his last name to 'Jamaee' from Naseer after graduating from Jamia-e-Millia.
"He was such a truthful and honest person, the best son a mother could ever have," said Jamaee's weeping mother. "When I was leaving for Rahim Yar Khan, he asked me to stay behind and wait for him to depart for Islamabad. But I did not listen to him, and he left forever - never to return back."
Jamaee was the eldest among a brother and three sisters. Mariam, Jamaee's other sister, said his brother aimed to study in the United States. "He wanted to work for BBC," she said, adding: "The memories of last night keep on coming back to me. He was talking to me the whole night and saying that on his return he would give me a treat. My brother, my best friend, my childhood buddy is gone. How will we survive?" she questioned, breaking down into tears.
KU meeting condoles death of
Karachi: Addressing a condolence meeting organised at the Vice-Chancellor's Secretariat to condole the loss of 152 precious lives, especially two Karachi University (KU) students, Bilal Naseer and Piyar Ali, the Vice-Chancellor, KU, Prof. Dr. Pirzada Qasim Raza Siddiqui, said that the university had faced the loss of its two meritorious students who were working tirelessly in search of a bright future and were striving to make their dreams come true.
"They were dynamic, and their dynamism was directed towards the right path, but no one can supersede the God's will. The entire University prays for their eternal bliss."
The meeting was attended by all the Deans, Chairpersons, and Teachers of Departments of Mass Communications and Geography, the Students' Adviser, Registrar Prof. Kaleem Raza Khan, and other members of the KU administration. The participants of the meeting said that the crash of Air Blue flight 202 on July 28, 2010, was the most terrible incident of plane crash in the history of Pakistan and the loss of 146 passengers and 6 members of the crew would be hard to overcome.
"Piyar Ali who, after graduating from the Geography Department, took admission in Master in the Mass Communications Department and Bilal Naseer was completing his BS (Honors) from the Department of Mass Communications. Bilal Naseer was an active member of the youth parliament." He said.
Meanwhile, the Chairpersons, Departments of Mass Communication and Geography, Dr. Rafia Taj and Dr. Khalida Mehmood respectively, expressed sorrow over the sudden and unfortunate death of these students and said that the confident personalities of these students will always remain alive in the hearts of their contemporaries.
In addition, Karachi University Teacher's Society has condoled this terrible incident and pointed out that appropriate measures should be taken so that such incidents can be avoided in future.
The Registrar informed the participants that two alumni of KU had also died in the catastrophic incident, one of them was a newly married woman - Aysha Samad Sheikh, who was a position holder, and the other one was Rehmat-ullah Domki, who died with his whole family.
KUTS concerned over delay in increments
Karachi: Office-bearers of the Karachi University Teachers Society (KUTS) have shown grave concern over news items reporting that that the University of Karachi (KU) will not be able to implement the government's notification regarding 50 per cent increase in salaries and pensions of the teachers and employees of the university. KUTS President Prof. Dr Abid Hasnain and General Secretary Prof. Dr Fayyaz Vaid said steps should be taken to ensure that the KU will also be able to implement the increments.
Transfer of college teachers
Karachi: The Sindh Professors and Lecturers' Association (SPLA) has warned taking to the streets over the issue of large-scale transfers of college teachers in Sindh. On the other hand, Senior Minister for Education and Literacy Pir Mazharul Haq has categorically said that he will not budge an inch and post lecturers in government colleges of rural areas, which badly need teachers.
They locked horns when the Department of Education and Literacy issued a list of postings and transfers of some 414 college teachers in a major reshuffle to end the acute shortage of teachers, especially in rural colleges.
The SPLA reacted sharply and its President Prof. Ather Hussain in a hurriedly-called press conference on Monday slated the move, demanding for cancelling of "all these unjustified transfers of the college teachers".
He also announced to observe token hunger strikes outside the major press clubs and colleges daily till the decision is withdrawn. He also warned a big sit-in outside the Chief Minister House on August 10.
From Tuesday the SPLA started its token hunger strikes, which entered the third day on Thursday, when the SPLA teachers observed token hunger strike outside the DJ Sindh Government Science College Karachi and press clubs of Hyderabad and Khairpur. Prof. Saeed-uz-Zaffar, president of Principals' Association also visited the hunger strike camp in Karachi to show solidarity with the college teachers.
Talking to the media, SPLA leaders Prof. Ather Mirza, Prof. Muzaffar Rizvi, Prof. Muhsan Raza and Prof. Iftikhar Aazmi said that their protest would continue till the withdrawal of controversial order of large-scale transfers of lecturers and professors.
On the other hand, the Sindh senior minister of education and literacy Pir Mazharul Haq chaired an emergency meeting of the education department officials at the Reform Support Unit (RSU) and categorically said that the college teachers would be posted in the far-flung rural colleges to end acute shortage of teachers there. He vowed that he would not bend knees to any pressure. He said that in case any transferred teacher felt that injustice was meted out to him or her, they should send their cases to the education department, which would ensure providing them justice.
He said that the teachers had been transferred from the colleges with excess teachers to the deficient ones, and the decision was aimed at to promote the cause of education and literacy.
However, the SPLA feels that the majority of transfers were unwarranted and aimed at to disturb the teacher fraternity.
Prof. Ather Hussain charges that the Sindh Education Department had carried out victimisation of teachers by ordering massive transfers on the pretext of rationalisation. He says there is no logic behind these massive transfers. Quoting an example, he said that the APWA College Karachi had 6,000 students with two lecturers of English subject, and out of them one had been transferred. The news