One-window operation for Inter students

KARACHI, July 16: The Board of Intermediate Education Karachi (BIEK) will start a one window operation from August 1 for Premedical, Pre-engineering, Arts and Commerce students visiting its office, stated chairman Anwar Ahmedzai addressing a radio press conference Sunday.

All processes will take three days if applied for with an urgent fee or one week with the normal fee.

A banking booth is also being set up within the Board's premises to assist visitors. The present bank branch dealing with BIEK matters is about 7.5 km away, making it difficult for students or their parents to reach it. The Board has engaged 46 bank branches from which students can acquire forms or documents. The Board will also receive forms and documents from students through designated bank branches from August 1.

Replying to a question, Ahmedzai said that at present the Board is examining some 0.25 million students, including private students in areas such as Medicine, Engineering, Commerce and the Humanities. This number increases by three to five percent every year. "There is no shortage of staff but now the existing staff strength is being rationed to ensure effective working," he said.

Steps are being taken to root out corruption from the Board, he said, mentioning three senior officials in particular, who had attempted to manipulate the results of the Commerce examinations. "They have been charge sheeted and if they cannot satisfy the authorities over their conduct, their services will be terminated." He added, "This organization is not an exception for it is a part of the society. The mafia involved will have to be broken up from within and outside the Board."

This is the first time that the development budget was not used. The BIEK budget is around Rs 330 million, including assets as well as recurring expenditure. "It is ironic that the Board was not getting interest on its deposits," he said. It is only getting four million rupees as opposed to the Rs 8.5 million the Mirpurkhas board received on its deposits till June 3, while it only had a 52,000 students as against 0.25 million of BIEK.

He said the opening balance of BIEK's budget for the new year is Rs 10.05 million.

Replying to a question, he said that the government has increased salaries by 15 percent. "This would result in an increase of 40 percent on the expenditure side in BIEK," he said. "The Board has no other source of income except for the receipts on account of the fees it receives from students."

To raise the Board's income, the size of its reserves will be kept at 9.5 percent of the total budget so that the Board can get better returns at the end of the year. The Board's current account will be maintained at a daily interest basis.

In response to another question, he said that the Aga Khan Education Board is currently in its initial stage and has released its first results. "Instead of learning from the AKU Board, we can make the AKU Board learn from us."

Replying to a question about the standard of education, he said that there are 2.5 million teachers in Sindh, but the majority of them are just there to draw a salary. Last year's unused development fund will be redistributed and spent on meeting the raise in employees' salaries. "People will see a significant change in the working of this board after only a month," he said. App

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