Financial crisis brewing at HEC
Another financial crisis brewing at HEC
Islamabad, July 26: The Higher
Education Commission (HEC) is likely to face the worst financial crisis ever as
the Planning Commission has released only 7% of the total development budget
during the first quarter of the fiscal year.
According to sources, the
Planning Commission has agreed to release only 7% against the 35% development
funds for July. The past practice was to issue 20% during the first two quarters
and 30% during the last two quarters.
Sources said that an amount of Rs14
billion was allocated to the HEC for the fiscal year 2011-12, including Rs200
million for scholarships. Only six new projects have been included in the PSDP
for the fiscal year 2011-12 with an allocation of Rs679.895 million. The
allocation for the ongoing projects is Rs13.32 billion.
However, it is
feared that HEC won't be able to work on its development projects due to
shortage of funds, sources said.
According to sources, in this
connection, HEC Executive Director (ED) Dr. Sohail Naqvi has written letters to
vice chancellors, rectors and deans of all universities, a copy of which is
available with 'The News'. In the letter, Dr. Naqvi informed heads of higher
education institutions about the whole situation and stated that the current
situation seems to be worse than the previous year.
"We are still
working out consequences of such a release schedule. However, in all probability
it will mean that during the first six months of the current fiscal year only
funds for scholarships would be available since these have to be paid in full
upfront at the beginning of the academic year. This will also mean that in all
probability less funds will be available since generally PSDP funds are the
first to be cut when any financial shortfall is faced," he said in the
He further informed that last year, as a result of the
consolidated demand of vice chancellors, bulk of the funds were released in the
first two quarters as is required by the nature of higher education projects.
Even then, an amount of Rs600 million was not released at the end of the
financial year. This year, the situation is already looking
According to information and contents of the letter, it is
expected that 7% of the total amount will be released every month. However no
assurance has been provided about it. "This will mean that every month, files
for the release of funds will have to be moved by the HEC by also providing
details about utilisation of funds released during the previous month. An
endless cycle of release and reconciliation will take place," Dr. Naqvi
mentioned in the letter.
HEC Chairman Dr. Javaid
Laghari conceded that the HEC was facing worst financial crisis its history.
"The released amount will not even suffice for paying tuition fees of our
scholarship holders which are to be paid upfront at the beginning of the
academic year (i.e. now). So all other development projects will have to go on
hold for three months," he said.
He said that they were still hopeful
that the government would consider the need for adequate release of funds for
the higher education sector and release sufficient amount of funds soon. The news
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HEC places 415 fresh PhD scholars in 66 universities
Islamabad: Higher Education Commission (HEC) has successfully
placed 415 Pakistani PhDs as Assistant Professors at 66 public and private
sector universities across the country. The task has been accomplished through
HEC's Interim Placement of Fresh PhDs (IPFP) programme. The specific faculty
requirements of the host institutions and the priority of returning scholars
were duly taken into consideration prior to every placement so that the services
of the PhD scholars are optimally utilized by HEC.
The programme has also
attracted non-HEC scholars, as out of 415,168 are non-HEC scholars who have
benefited from IPFP programme. Among the new universities brought on board this
year are mostly young HEIs such as Abdul Wali Khan University, Mardan,
Balochistan University of Information Technology, Engineering and Management
Sciences, Quetta, Beaconhouse National University, Lahore, Dawood College of
Engineering and Technology, Karachi, College of Business Management, Karachi and
Karakorum International University, Gilgit. Daily times
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Highs and lows of Air University
Islamabad: In its audit of the Capital Development Authority
(CDA) accounts of fiscal year 2010-11, the Auditor General of Pakistan (AGP) has
identified Rs12.36 billion misappropriations and objections.
Out of the 77 audit objections, the AGP detected the biggest loss of Rs2.91
billion in the allotment of land at low price to the Air University, which is a
private enterprise and charges its students high fees.
The AGP report has highlighted that Director Estate Management-II allotted
land measuring 70 acres (338,800 square yards) in H-11/2 on 33-year lease to Air
University at Rs4,500 per square yard instead of Rs13,100 per sq yard as
notified by the finance wing of the CDA.
The audit report said the CDA had offered the same land at Rs7,400 per square
yard in September 2010 during negotiations with the Higher Education Commission
(HEC), which was mediating the agreement.
The CDA told the HEC since the Air University was a private entity and was
functioning on commercial basis it should pay Rs7,400 per square yard.
The auditors have identified that the lower rates were not applicable since
the Air University was charging commercial fee from the students which is higher
than the fees charged by public sector universities. However, the CDA later
agreed to lease the land at reduced prices of Rs4,500.
Another major misappropriation of Rs2.60 billion has been reported in the
unauthorised rescheduling of payment relating to a plot by Pak Gulf Construction
In a similar case the office of the CDA director project management did not
cash the bank guarantees provided by Pak Gulf Construction Company even when the
company stopped payments of its monthly instalment for the plot it purchased.
There is another audit objection related to the same case amounting to Rs816.27
The auditors have highlighted that the CDA enhanced the rock excavation rates
to National Highway Authority at Zero Point Interchange, by manifolds after the
It highlighted that the rates quoted by the NHA at the time of filing bids
were Rs521.49 per cubic meter for hard rock, Rs333.40 per cubic meter for medium
rock and Rs270.38 per cubic meter for soft rock.
However, the NHA enhanced the rates to Rs1,464.42, Rs1,065.00 and Rs960.84
respectively which were accepted by the CDA Deputy Director Roads Division-I on
the grounds that the rates quoted by the NHA were for rock excavation through
blasting which could not be done at Zero Point and the NHA had to use
earthmoving machine.The audit report said the NHA quoted rates as per their
schedule and after inspection of the site but after obtaining the contract, it
enhanced the charges significantly causing a loss of Rs66.50 million to the
There are various references and objections amounting to Rs1.2 billion which
include irregular award of works without tendering,
The Deputy Director
Building Control Section-III failed to charge Rs275.10 million for additional
floors from 4th to 10th on a building of Pakistan Red Crescent Society.
In another case, the CDA placed six category-I plots measuring 600 sq yards
each and three category–II plots measuring 356 sq yards each in I-8 sector at
the disposal of Federal Government Employees' Housing Foundation. It doled out
the plots from its quota through Director Estate management –I, without any
The auditors have recommended strict internal management controls in the CDA,
where the objections and recommendations of the finance department are either
overruled or ignored.
Besides, the recovery departments should develop follow-up mechanism.
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Students of private colleges excel in HSSC exams
Abbottabad/Mardan: The intermediate and secondary education
boards of Abbottabad and Mardan announced results of higher secondary schools
certificate part-II on Sunday.
Safia Bibi of the Peace School and College, Nowshera Cant, topped the overall
results of the Mardan board, getting 970 marks out of 1,100 marks.
Mohammad Ali of the Government Degree College, Gandaf Swabi, stood second
with 966 marks while Hanadi Shad of the Quaid-e-Azam Public School and College,
Swabi, stood third securing 956 marks, respectively.
Announcing results, the controller of examinations, Prof Farmanullah, said a
total of 54,123 candidates appeared in the examination out of which 28,070 were
declared successful. Overall results remained 60.78 per cent.
In pre-medical group, Safia Bibi of the Peace School and College, Nowshera
Cant, bagged first position with 970 marks. In pre-engineering group, Raweed
Ullah, Noman and Yousaf Ali of the Quaid-e-Azam Public School and College, Swabi
positions.In the general science group, Nimra Hamid of the Islamia
Degree College for Girls, Nowshera got first position with
888 marks. In the
humanities group, Sheena Fazal Ali of the Government Girls Higher Secondary
School, Topi Swabi, bagged first position securing 863 marks.
Meanwhile, in Abbottabad board, Malik Abdul Wahab of Pakistan International
Public School and College topped the over results securing 958 marks.
According to the controller of the examinations, a total of 29,013 students
appeared in part-II examination out of which 15,846 were declared pass with
54.62 pass percentage.
In pre-medical (female) Aqsa Shahzadi of Jinnah Jamia, Haripur, clinched
first position by getting 936 marks, while Rabia Kanwal got second position
securing 935 marks. In pre-medical (male) Danyal Sajjad of Al-Quran School,
Mansehra got first position with 946 marks.
In pre-engineering (female) Hina Shoukat of Jinnah Jamia, Haripur secured
first position getting 945 marks. In pre-engineering (male) Malik Abdul Wahab of
Pakistan International Public School and College got first position with 958
In general science (female) Iqra Shah of Khyber Public School, Mansehra got
first position with 837 marks. In general science (male), Hassan Ali Butt of
Pakistan International Public School and College, clinched first position with
926 marks. Dawn
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MUST to hold entry test on August 21
Mirpur(AJK): The state-run Mirpur University of Science & Technology
(MUST) here Monday announced that the entry test for the admissions to 4-year
Undergraduate Programmes 2011-12 in Engineering Disciplines will be held only in
Mirpur on August 21, 2011, it was officially declared.
"In continuation of our
advertisement (Admission Notice) published in various national English and Urdu
dailies, all the
candidates seeking admission in 4-year undergraduate programmes in the Mirpur
University of Science and Technology (MUST), Mirpur are informed that the entry
test will be held only in Mirpur on August 21, for Engineering disciplines,"
says an official proclamation released by Public Relations Officer MUST Raja
Ijaz Salim here on Monday.
"Therefore the candidates are
advised to select only Mirpur as venue for the Entry Test", the proclamation
said adding "other requirements and instruction will remain the same". The nation
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