Higher education in Pakistan | Kidnapped students mystery
June 05: University education is one of the key factors for the
economic growth of a state. Pakistan had only two universities at the time of
independence but the figure rose to 44 along with 10 degree awarding
institutions at the beginning of the 21st century. Out of those 44 universities,
31 belonged to the public sector which clearly manifested a lack of concern on
the part of the successive governments as the nation needed a gigantic effort to
build higher educational institutions.
The last regime, however, addressed the
issue and by the end of 2008, there were 94 universities and 30 degree awarding
institutions. The figures seem healthy and encouraging but a more important
indicator than merely the number of universities is the total number of student
enrolment in the country. During 2001-02, the total number of students attending
universities was 276,000 which rose to 741,000 during 2007-08. Though apparently
encouraging but this merely constitute only 4 percent of the total population.
Moreover, let us consider whether our higher education system is performing
well. There are less than around 25 percent of the faculty members in our
universities who hold doctoral degrees. That clearly means that we do not have
qualified people who are imperative in order to build and smoothly run our
institutions. The Higher Education Commission (HEC) has endeavoured a lot during
last many years to improve the faculty qualifications by providing generous
foreign and local scholarships for PhD candidates. Some of the people who had
been funded during the last several years have completed their PhDs successfully
and are working, while many are still in the process. The government has
provided through HEC huge sums for foreign PhD studies but this policy cannot
generate healthy results in nutshell.
Another issue of key importance is the selection of courses and establishing new
departments. Our universities, in particular public sector, attempt to offer a
wide range of programmes that has created a lot of similar programmes in
different universities. Although this is not a bad policy altogether yet our
university management system must consider building specialised departments in
different universities, especially in pure and applied sciences.
and perhaps the most important factor related to the efficiency is governance.
Today, university management has become an established discipline but
unfortunately, it is not visible in our institutions.
especially in the public sector, are lacking in efficiency and perform at a very
low level in teaching and research. The sole reason is the old and outdated
management style of running the affairs. The authorities must consider revamping
the governance of the universities. Some good universities working in private
sectors can also help other universities to improve their management for higher
By Tauseef Aized, The writer is a professor at the University of Engineering and
Technology, Lahore and currently a research fellow at the Monash University,
Australia. E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org (The Nation)
"i want to study in good university but some financial problem i can not attened any good university , so please give me chance of scolarship and give the admission in any good university.."
Name: Abbas Ali
City, Country: Lasbela, Pakistan
"Dear Abbas, there are a lot of scholarships advertisements of local & foreign universities in newspapers as well as on the website of HEC. No one is going to offer you a lolly pop of scholarship. go ahead and follow the criteria of these scholarships. Inshallah you will succeed. regards, "
Name: Muhammad ImranSiddique
City, Country: Fsd, Pakistan
"The author has shown his newbiehood in the business by relating economic growth with university education and remains unable to convince using Google stats related to Higher Education in Pakistan. He needs to know that number of universities and enrolled students is not an indicator of economic well being of the any nation. If it were so then why would people in countries with large number of universities and above 90% literacy would live in poverty? Last but not least the author contrary to his profession being a professor of UET Lahore criticizes the efficiency and governance issues in higher education institutions. If he cannot contribute and tell the remedy then who will do that - an army general ;)."
City, Country: USA
"All daily wages teacher need to come together under one roof and decide to launch a movement and promise to continue till all daily wages teachers and lecturers are made permanent regardless of length of experience, however their seniority shall be as per their experience as daily wages. This is doable now because of political government also PP is always having a soft corner towards teachers. Beaurocracy is a the hurdle for real. We all need to push them."
Name: Muhammad Awais
City, Country: Pakistan
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Kidnapped students mystery
The mystery around the kidnapped students of Razmak Cadet College continues
to deepen. Media reports on Monday, based on information gathered from available
sources, varied as much as from 20 to 500 students having been forcibly taken
No word came from the college administration meanwhile regarding the exact
number of students, teachers and their family members who were abruptly told
that the college had been closed, bundled into waiting minibuses and sent to
Bannu without proper security. This was the height of neglect, considering the
ongoing offensive against the Taliban who have carried out attacks in a number
of districts around. What is more, their highly active chief Baitullah Mehsud
has headquarters in the neighbouring South Waziristan.
The confusion has been
worst confounded by conflicting reports about the exact number of the missing
students, indicating a total lack of coordination between various government
agencies. Soon after the incident the college Vice Principal said only 26
students and six teachers had gone missing. On Tuesday, the ISPR said 80 had
been released while 15 were missing, while Brig Zahid Abdullah who led the
rescue operation told reporters the same day that 124 cadets and eight teachers
had been rescued. Information Minister Qamar Zaman Kaira has given the figure of
47 students and five teachers still unaccounted for. Coming as it does from the
federal government, the information would be considered more reliable.
are indications that the 50-odd students are in the custody of the Taliban and
have presumably been shifted to an area in South Waziristan under Baitullah
Mehsud's control. The helpless parents of the students have been driven from
pillar to post to learn the whereabouts of their children. The kidnapping of
children for political purposes is a highly callous act and is liable to be
widely condemned. The Taliban would further turn public opinion against them if
they failed to release the cadets urgently.
Meanwhile, one expects the
government to launch a well-coordinated attempt to recover the cadets and their
teachers. All conventional methods should be employed to get them released. A
clear-cut message should be conveyed to the top Taliban leadership that any harm
done to the students or their teachers would lead to the worst possible
reprisals. The Nation
Kidnapped students freed
Miramshah/Bannu: Militants in South Waziristan freed unconditionally
all the kidnapped students and teachers of the Razmak Cadet College after
holding talks with a tribal jirga on Thursday.
The 45 students and two
teachers were taken to the college after the militants turned them over to the
jirga in Makeen. They were taken to Bannu by military helicopters where they met
North Waziristan Political Agent Mutahir Zeb said the
militants had released the hostages unconditionally to the 40-member jirga.
The jirga comprised elders of the Janikhel and Bakkakhel tribes in whose
areas the kidnapping had taken place. It had gone to South Waziristan on
Wednesday to hold talks with Taliban.
The administration had given a
24-hour deadline to the tribes to secure the release of the students and staff
Bannu Commissioner Sardar Abbas and Brig Zahid Abdullah told a
media briefing in Bannu that the administration had constituted the jirga and
launched a crackdown on the tribes under the territorial and collective
responsibility sections of the Frontier Crime Regulation and sealed their
property and businesses.
They said all hostages were unharmed.
They said a decision to end the crackdown against the tribes would be
On Tuesday, 81 students and teachers had been rescued by
security forces after an exchange of fire with militants in the Garyom area of
There were conflicting reports about the number of
students and teaching staff kidnapped by Taliban in Bakkakhel area of Bannu
Frontier Region while they were going home from Razmak on Monday.
adds: "We have released them in the interest of peace in the region. We accepted
the request of the tribal jirga," said Hakimullah Mehsud, a spokesman for
Tehrik-i-Taliban Pakistan chief Baitullah Mehsud.
Security forces had
earlier found eight abandoned vehicles, their drivers and students' luggage in a
village in North Waziristan, officials said.
Local authorities had
threatened a military raid to rescue the captives. Parents of the missing pupils
demonstrated in Bannu and criticised the government's handling of the crisis.
An anguished parent said: "The government is responsible for this
kidnapping. Why did they choose a bad time for travel?" Dawn
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Daily wage teachers doomed to spend vacation sans salary
Islamabad: Today (Friday) is the last working day in government schools and
colleges, as two-month long summer vacations will start from June 8. There is
nothing more exciting than vacation for the students. But the same is not true
for teachers appointed on daily wages, as they would not be paid during
More than 500 teachers of 19 model colleges in the federal capital
are not given any salary as they work on daily-wage basis. Despite the fact that
they have been working for years and many of them have spent 10 to 17 years of
their lives in these institutions yet their services have not been regularised
by the Ministry of Education.
Ironically, in spite of possessing high
qualifications and rendering years of services to the satisfaction of the
institutions, their salaries range from Rs5,000 to Rs8,000 monthly with no any
other facilities and allowances.
The lecturers were appointed in B-17 on
daily wage basis in different model educational institutions of
The colleges working under the Federal Directorate of Education
(FDE), Ministry of Education collect fee from the students in summer vacations
still these teachers are not entitled to any salary.
Model colleges, which
remain the preference of the parents for various reasons, including education
standards, fees and overall atmosphere collect heavy amount from the students in
terms of different funds which are utilised by the colleges and go to the
pockets of the officials.
Though they were assured verbally and in written
for regularization of their services on many occasions yet practically nothing
has been done as yet.
Repeated meetings with the officials of the ministry including Minister of
Education Mir Hazar Khan Bijarani, FDE Director General Atique-ur-Rehman and
Director Model Colleges Mujahid Zameer brought no fruits for the poor teachers.
Even the ministry set aside the orders of Islamabad High Court, which on
April 2, 2008 directed it "to consider the qualified teachers for regularization
irrespective of their categorization-ad hoc, on daily wages or on contract basis
taking into consideration their pervious length of services against regular
posts at the earliest opportunity".
The judgement further stated "the
lecturers have been rendering valuable teaching services on daily wages for a
considerable period and unless some form of regularization is made they will
lose interest and subsequently the student will suffer".
made to the posts of regular lecturers but these daily wagers were ignored every
time. It's been learnt that the ministry has agreed to regularise the services
of those who have been working for more than ten years but those who have worked
5, 8 and 9 years have no future as they have become over age and cannot apply
afresh with other candidates.
Although the minister had categorically ordered
the officials of the FDE either to pay the salaries to teachers or not to get
funds from the students but no positive development has been made regarding this
inhuman practice, which is clear discrimination causing demoralisation of the
teaching staff. The Nation
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Candidates want written test centre at Rawalpindi
Rawalpindi: Candidates appearing in the Punjab Public Service Commission
(PPSC) Examination 2009 have complained that the provincial government has set
up only one examination centre in Lahore.
A group of candidates said that the seven-day examination will start
on Saturday (June 6). They regretted that the Punjab government has not set up
an examination centre in Rawalpindi this time around.
Sources said that
more than 14,000 candidates belonging to different parts of the province would
appear in a weeklong written examination for various posts of BPS-17. Candidates
have appealed to the concerned authorities to set up an examination centre in
Rawalpindi as it would be difficult for them to make arrangements for their stay
in Lahore for the whole week.
Muhammad Aziz, a candidate, said: "I cannot
bear the expenses of staying in Lahore for seven days." He said that the
chairman and members of the PPSC should review the decision regarding single
Sidra Bibi, another candidate, said: "It is not
possible for female candidates to stay in Lahore for the whole week without our
Huma Hayat said: "I have made full preparation for the
PPSC examination, but my family is not allowing me to go to Lahore."
PPSC Regional In-charge Syed Muzzafar Hussain, when contacted said: "The decision to this effect was taken by the PPSC chairman and
members. Definitely, candidates would face a lot of problems because of the new
policy. I cannot change the policy as the matter pertains to the high-ups."
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SC orders fresh probe into killing of three students
Islamabad: The Supreme Court on Thursday expressed dissatisfaction over the
police report about the three students' murdered in a police encounter in
Khairpur, Sindh, and ordered a fresh investigation into the incident.
three-member bench of the apex court, comprising Chief Justice Iftikhar Muhammad
Chaudhry, Justice Raja Fayyaz Ahmad and Justice Chaudhry Ijaz Ahmad, was hearing
a suo moto case regarding the murder of the three innocent students in a police
According to reports, three students, including Allah Dino,
14, Zameer, 17, and Gul Baig, 13, all belonging to the cast Jageerani and
residents of the district Khairpur, were killed in a police
The court directed for conducting a fresh inquiry into the
incident after transferring all the involved police officers so that they might
not influence the investigation. The court further directed immediate arrest of
the accused policemen as well.
During the course of proceedings, the
chief justice regretted the release of the accused police officials and directed
immediate arrest of all the involved police personnel. "Who had ordered the
release of the said police personnel?" the chief justice
Appearing on notice, District Police Officer (DPO), Khairpur,
told the court that the police personnel were released on an affidavit by the
heirs of the murdered teenagers, saying that the said police personnel were not
involved in the murder. He further informed the court that the police party had
been sent to arrest dacoits in the area. He said the dacoits opened fire on the
police after which the police retaliated.
He said the police report
stated that the bullets found were of the sub machine gun (SMG) belonging to the
dacoits which, he said, suggested that the students had been killed by the
dacoits' fire. The court expressed astonishment that three innocent students
were killed in the encounter while no policeman had received injuries. The News
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Girls' school blown up in Peshawar
Peshawar: Suspected Taliban blew up a girls' high school in
Badabher Police precincts on Thursday, police said. A police official at the
Badabher Police Station said that the suspects planted explosives at
the school. He said the blast had severely damaged the building. A Bomb Disposal
Squad official said that the militants had planted five bombs
weighing around four to five kilogrammes each and fired a rocket at the
building. Sulimankhel Nazim Akmal Khan said that the local Taliban
and Lashkar-e-Islam (LI) militants could be behind the attack. He said the
suspects had also blown up CD shops in the union council a few months ago. Daily Times
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