Entrance test put off after paper leak
Lahore, July 25: A combined entrance test for admission to engineering institutes of the province was conducted by University of Engineering and Technology, Lahore, on Sunday was cancelled following the university administration received reports of leak of the question paper.
The test was conducted successfully and right after that the UET Lahore administration announced to cancel it, admitting that it had received vital information about the leak of the test content.
Around 41,000 candidates had appeared in the test in different centres as besides the UET Lahore, the test was simultaneously held at other parts of the country. An amount of Rs 350 was collected from each student for appearing in the test and it is learnt that whenever the test would be rescheduled, no fee would be charged from the students. There are around 4,000 seats in different engineering institutes of Punjab, including around 2,000 alone in the UET Lahore, and the university itself conducts entrance test for all the institutes as mandated by the Punjab government. Besides the UET Lahore, the test was conducted at UET Taxila, Bahauddin Zakariya University s Engineering College, Multan, Islamia University, Bahawalpur (IUB), NFC Institute of Engineering Research & Fertilizer, Faisalabad, University of Gujrat, Siddeeq Public School, 6th Road, Satellite Town, Rawalpindi, NED University of Engineering and Technology, Karachi, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa University of Engineering and Technology, Peshawar and Balochistan Boys Scout Association Office, Quetta.
It is pertinent to mention here that quite recently, entrance test for the National University of Sciences and Technology (NUST) for admission to its BE/BS Mathematics/BCS scheduled for July 17, 2011 (Morning Session) was cancelled following reports emerged about the leak of the question paper.
The growing incidents of paper leak have raised serious doubts about working of the test conducting bodies besides highlighting powerful mafia involved in the whole process.
The news regarding cancellation of the entrance test caused great anxiety among the candidates who had strongly criticised the Punjab government for its failure to ensure transparency and wasting their precious time as now the test would be rescheduled after a couple of weeks. The stakeholders criticised the UET Lahore VC and termed the latest incident as his failure being the top administrator of the university.
It is important to mention here that Lt Gen (r) Muhammad Akram Khan won fourth extension as the UET Lahore s VC in 2010 after his third term expired in February 2010. His critics argue that the VC should resign as he could not ensure transparency in the test and caused unrest among thousands of students. However, those in favour of the VC said it was a bold and justified decision on the part of the VC to cancel the test after it was conducted successfully, adding that it was the first incident of its kind in the UET s history and its handling would expose real administrative qualities of the VC.
Sources in the UET administration revealed that as per preliminary investigations, it had been confirmed that a mobile camera was used by someone to capture some content of the paper. They said some UET employees might be involved in the incident. They further said that once investigated properly, the incident might lead to unearthing powerful mafia involved in the entrance test.
It is learnt that Punjab Governor Latif Khosa, who is also chancellor of the province s public sector universities, immediately called the UET Lahore vice-chancellor and directed him to hold an inquiry into the matter and award exemplary punishment to those responsible for leak of the question paper.. A UET spokesman said a three-member committee, comprising Dr Zubair A Khan, Dr M Ali and Prof Dr Muhammad Akram, had been formed by the VC to dig out the facts and submit a comprehensive report in this regard. When contacted, UET Vice Chancello Lt Gen (r) Akram Khan said the committee had been asked to submit the report within a week. He confirmed that the university had received unconfirmed information about leak of the paper before conduct of the test but since there was no concrete evidence available they decided to hold the test. However, he further said, after the test was conducted, the university got confirmed evidence according to which some portion of the test was leaked. The VC said that instead of keeping silence, he had decided to cancel the test in the best interest of the students.
About the next date of the entrance test, Lt Gen (r) Muhammad Akram Khan said that since result of intermediate annual examination 2011 was yet to be announced, there was plenty of time to reschedule the test.Your Comments
Leaks bare flaws in entrance test
Lahore: The recent incidents of leakage of question papers of entrance tests for admission to professional institutes has exposed the negligence on part of those responsible besides highlighting active and powerful mafia involved in selling education.
The papers are leaked and distributed among the students to mint quick and huge money by the influential mafia having deep penetration and connection with those involved in preparation of the tests.
There are reports that 17 July s entrance test of the National University of Sciences and Technology (NUST) for admission to its BE/BS Mathematics/BCS, which was cancelled following over its leakage reports, was sold at Rs 50,000 and more. Similarly, there are rumours that the UET entrance test which had to be cancelled on July 24 after reports of leakage of some of its portion was also sold at Rs 50,000 to Rs 100,000.
The Punjab government had introduced entrance test as a mandatory activity to filter out students coming from various local as well as foreign examination bodies so that only the really talented could secure admission to engineering and medical colleges. However, it is quite obvious that the very spirit behind conduct of entrance test comes under attack whenever an incident of paper leakage surfaces. Students and their parents are critical of the government and demand that admission to professional institutes should be made on an open merit basis as is the case with admissions to institutes of general education.
Over the years mushroom growth of entrance test preparation centres has been observed while the fact cannot be ignored too that heavy fees are charged by these centres to prepare students for various kinds of entrance tests.
The stakeholders have been demanding the Punjab government to regulate unbridled working of the private entrance test preparation centres but to no avail. The government s indifferent response in this regard is similar to its response towards working of private schools and colleges as no regulatory body is in place despite repeated and genuine demands.
The increasing incidents of leakage of entry tests should be an eye-opener for the government while now the stakeholders also demand that the government also investigate working of entrance test preparation centres in this regard.
In Punjab, the University of Engineering & Technology (UET) Lahore conducts entrance test for admission to engineering institutes while the University of Health Science (UHS) organizes test for admission to medical colleges and universities of the province. However, now many pubic sector varsities have also introduced entrance test for admission to various academic programmes other than engineering and medical disciplines and they conduct entrance tests themselves. This shows the kind of ambiguity the whole system of entrance test offers besides many other loopholes. The very absence of a single body to conduct entrance tests also plays a role in leaking of question papers.
It is pertinent to mention here that in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, the Educational Testing and Evaluation Agency (ETEA), headed by the province s chief minister, conducts entrance tests for admission to engineering and medical institutes. Besides, the body is also mandated to introduce reforms in the examination and testing systems and impart training in order to achieve objectivity, transparency and efficiency.
Academic circles are of the view that the Punjab government, if it continues with the entrance test phenomenon, certainly needs a centralised body like the ETEA, comprising honest and committed individuals to achieve transparency. The news
Delay in SSC results leaves students high and dry
Chakwal: The plan to announce the Secondary School Certificate (SSC) results by the Punjab Boards of Intermediate and Secondary Education (BISEs) online has run into snags due to various reasons and the delay in the results has left the candidates high and dry.
The Punjab BISEs planned to announce the SSC results on July 21 but it was delayed indefinitely leaving thousands of students and teachers confused.
The result has been delayed due to lack of proper facilities such as sufficient funds and staff. Sources in the BISE Rawalpindi confirmed that the board could not announce the result on the given date due to serious technical problems which occurred when the government decided to switch over to the online examination system. "Neither have we proper and sufficient machinery nor have we been given the required number of technical staff", a senior official said on request of anonymity.
He said that all the FIBEs had been facing worst public pressure since the online system was launched as many mistakes in date sheets and result cards occurred frequently due to lack of sufficient staff and machinery. "The students and their parents have to face many problems due to the online system," he conceded.
Muddassir Zaman, a lecturer at Cadet College Kallar Kahar said that the delay in the result damaged the morale of the students as they were anxious to see the fruit of their hard work. Commenting on the online system, he said that the system would be the best provided it was run by competent staff.
When contacted, Arsalan Cheema, Public Relations Officer (PRO) of BISE Rawalpindi confirmed that the result was delayed due to the online system. "We could not prepare the result due to some technical problems", he said. However, he said that the result would be announced in the first week of August.
VCs to two more universities appointed
Lahore: In a give and take move on Saturday, Governor Sardar Latif Khosa retained his selection for the Government College University vice chancellor, but reversed his earlier decision about the University of Education VC and picked chief minister's nominee.
Khosa stuck to his early recommendation of Prof Dr Kahleequr Rehman as vice-chancellor of the Government College University, Lahore. However, he retracted from his previous decision and appointed Prof Dr Faiz-ul-Hasan as vice-chancellor of the University of Education, Lahore.
Both Prof Rehman and Prof Hasan are currently serving at the University of Engineering and Technology, Lahore. The governor has appointed both of them with immediate effect for a period of four years and the Punjab higher education secretary has notified their appointment.
In a summary moved to the chief minister for the appointment of UoE VC, the governor has stated that in a meeting with the Punjab chief secretary on July 22 he had another appraisal of the credentials of the three candidates included in the panel and reached the decision that "Prof Dr Faiz-ul-Hasan is the best choice for appointment as vice-chancellor to the University of Education, Lahore".
The governor in a summary moved to the chief minister on July 7, it may be mentioned, had stated that he had found vision and the roadmap of Prof Dr Chaudhry Jamil Anwar, who was on top in the panel of three candidates, better than the other candidates. He had stated that higher education department's search committee had placed Prof Anwar on top of the list, but the chief minister did not offer any reason for superseding him and putting his weight behind Prof Dr Faiz-ul-Hasan.
As the governor has appointed Prof Hasan as UoE VC after a tussle with the chief minister that spanned almost four months, academics believe that both governor and chief minister's secretariats have ignored the fact that UoE is specialised in the discipline of education. They say education is a professional qualification like engineering and hence there is a need to appoint a vice-chancellor qualified in the same discipline.
After appointment of vice-chancellors to two more universities, the University of Sargodha and Bahauddin Zakariya University, Multan, are still without vice-chancellors. The Punjab government is to hold an inquiry into chief minister's recommended candidate for the University of Sargodha Prof Dr Chaudhry Akram on the instructions of the governor/chancellor, while the higher education department is already holding an inquiry into governor's recommendation of Prof Dr Muhammad Zafarullah as BZU vice-chancellor.
PROF REHMAN is the recipient of Izaz-e-Kamal, HEC Best Teacher Award 2008 and gold medal from the Pakistan Institute of Physics. He was nominated by the Nobel Committee for Nobel Prize in Physics for 2011.
Prof Rehman said that he would go to the GCU with an open heart and share his experience of foreign universities that he gained during a recent visit to European universities.
PROF HASAN said that the quality of teachers currently serving in schools and colleges was poor and he would make efforts to improve the quality of teachers to be produced by the University of Education. Prof Hasan has been serving as coordinator of University of Engineering and Technology's Kala Shah Kaku campus since 2008. He served as dean of the Faculty of Chemical and Polymer Engineering from 2005 to 2008 and acting VC of UET in the absence of vice-chancellor Muhammad Akram. He served as Metallurgy Department chairman from 1997 to 2000. Dawn
390 students awarded degrees, awards at FAST
Lahore: At least 390 successful students of engineering and business administration were awarded degrees and medals at a convocation held by the FAST National University of Computer and Emerging Sciences on Saturday.
FAST Rector Dr Amir Muhammad, Secretary General Rana Ghulam Shabbir, Director of Lahore Campus Dr Arshad Hussain, other faculty members, students and their parents attended the convocation.
Addressing the event, Amir Muhammad congratulated the students, saying the FAST had given them the best education and it was now up to them to use their wisdom and knowledge as the future was in their hands.
The rector said that the university received over 9,000 applications at the Lahore Campus and over 16,000 combined at all four campuses.
He added that Punjab government was providing financial support to university through Punjab Educational Endowment Fund for the students who could not meet the expenses of the university.
He said that the FAST offered degree programmes for bachelors including electric engineering, computer sciences, business administration, finance and accounting, civil engineering, masters degree programmes in computer science, electrical engineering, software project management, mathematics and business administration. He added that the FAST also offers PhD programmes in computer science, business administration and mathematics. Daily times
Lahore: The Punjab University (PU) has announced the result of D.O.M.S Part-II Annual Examination, 2010. According to a press statement, pass percentage in the exam remained 40 percent. The result is available on www.pu.edu.pk. The news