Summer camps in scorching heat

Students oppose summer camps in scorching heat
Rawalpindi, June 18: A large number of students and their parents have voiced concern over the holding of summer camps by the respective school administrations and the failure of the authorities to get the institutions closed during summer vacation.

The students belonging to different government and private educational institutions called upon the authorities in the Punjab government, city district government and the education directorate to help close the institutions because students have to attend classes in scorching heat during summer vacation.

Mohammad Adil, a grade VI student of a private school, questioned what is the use of declaring summer vacation when they are forced by the management to attend summer classes.

Sumaira, a grade VII student of another private institution, said that a new practice has been developed to call the students in institutions in the garb of summer camps. There is no need of giving two months summer vacation if summer camps are to be held. Similarly, for the first time, the government schools following the private schools have also implemented the same policy. Students of different government schools were seen attending summer camps in sizzling heat.

It is learnt through sources in different schools that a number of students have fainted while attending summer classes because of scorching heat and high temperature. However, the headmasters of the respective institutions denied the claims saying that students take classes inside the rooms and not under the open sky, how could they become unconscious.

The parents of the students also opposed the holding of summer camps during vacation. "If summer vacations are declared then students should be allowed to take rest at homes, said Mehtab Bibi whose son has to attend summer camp.

Saqib, father of a grade VIII child studying in a private school in Lalazar, alleged that when the parents do not send their children to summer camps, the school principals and teachers start disturbing them on phones asking the reason why their son or daughter did not come to school.

Action is taken against students and fines are imposed if the children avoid attending summer classes, said Mumtaz Shah whose three children are studying in a private educational institution.

Commissioner Rawalpindi Zahid Saeed, when contacted, expressed his concern over the reports that many students were fainted due to scorching heat while attending summer camps. "I would enquire about the real position whether summer camps are mandatory or optional in both the government and private schools. If found optional then this practice would be stopped through official orders."

The concerned managements should not force the students to attend summer camps if it is optional, he said. Similarly, no fine should be imposed and there should be no action against those students who do not attend the camps, he stressed. I would check it and would take positive measures in the best interest of the students, Zahid Saeed said. The news

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"education cannot be imposed on students if they are not willing. I have noticed the unwillingness of students to attend summer camp which is arranged by institution which is not without reason. It is quite difficult for them to attend their school specially if it is out of way. In the pricky, scroaching and sizzling heat it is mere wastage of their time, energy as well as money too if they cannot concentrate and focus on their studies. Ususally only those students manages to come to school without difficulty who resides near the school.the ultimate suffere are those teachers who fear their heads and students whose parents fear the threats posed by the institution and head as fine or expulsion from the school."
Name: zohra bibi
City, Country: peshawar

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PAL high-ups working against literary activities, alleges employee
Islamabad: Pakistan Academy of Letters (PAL), a public sector organisation meant to promote literary activities, has been alleged of creating hurdles in arranging literary functions on its premises.

PAL Editor (English) Khurram Khiraam Siddiqui requested the PAL administration to allow him hold a three-day 'Creative Writing Workshop' for the promotion of literature on premises of the academy from June 15- 17, but the high-ups turned down his request without giving any reason.

Sources told this scribe that the basic aim of PAL was to promote literary activities, but unfortunately the PAL administration is doing the opposite. "The academy is being governed by a mafia that charge from the literary people for holding any activity and whoever refuses they do not let that literary activity take place in the academy," they said.

Siddiqui told Daily Times that he had requested PAL high-ups in writing to allow him hold a creative writing workshop in hall of the academy but the high-ups rejected his request without any justification.

Siddiqui said he was working in PAL as Editor English and it is in his responsibility to arrange literary events to promote English literature but every time the high-ups create hurdles in this regard.

He said the said workshop was aimed at polishing the skills of young students of various institutions and he was bearing all expenditures of the workshop. "I had just requested PAL administration to provide space for holding the activity, as it is the right of every writer of Pakistan to organise literary function in the academy, but the high-ups intimidated me instead of accommodating me," he alleged.

"Rs 2.5 to 3 million budget is allocated to PAL quarterly to organise the literary events but after conducting few of events all money goes to the pockets of high-ups," he said.

Siddiqui said on June 15 a DG level officer threatened him that he would be dismissed and a disciplinary action will be taken against him.

"Instead of funding the activity for which the academy gets the grant on quarterly basis they do not let their own employee to hold any literary activity when he is happily spending on literature," he said.

Siddiqui said after getting disappointed he had sent an application to Secretary Cabinet Nargis Sethi who is now head of PAL after the institution was devolved into Cabinet Division. Siddiqui said he also sent a copy of application to Chief Justice of Pakistan. Daily times

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College teachers meet secretary establishment
Islamabad: A delegation of Joint Action Forum (JAF) of both the Federal Government Colleges and Model Colleges Association met the Establishment Secretary Ch. Abdur Rauf and senior Joint Secretary Ghulam Safdar in their offices, says a press release issued here on Friday.

The FG colleges representatives in the JAF, Professor Khalida Makhdoom, Professor Yasmeen Bokhari, Professor Tahir Mahmood and Professor Ali Yar told the secretary and senior joint secretary that the college professors had been waiting for the implementation of the special package for them since it was announced by the prime minister in the Convention Centre, here (7 months back) and it is still lingering on.

They also added that this special package enabled the professors to get promotion through prescribed time scale formula who had been working in the same grades for the last 18 to 20 years.

They also demanded that BPS-21 should also be remained in the time scale formula as it was announced by prime minister.

The representatives of Model Colleges Association in the JAF Professor Abdur Raqeeb and Professor Memuna told the senior joint secretary that the allocated funds for time scale promotion will be lapsed if the package is not implemented up to June 30.

The senior joint secretary Ghulam Safdar assured the delegation of JAF that the matter will be resolved soon.

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VC versus university teacher UoP moves SC against PHC verdict
Peshawar: The University of Peshawar (UoP) has moved the Supreme Court against the Peshawar High Court (PHC) decision to restrain it from action against an assistant professor of the university.

Vice-Chancellor Dr Azmat Hayat suspended Muhammad Zubair, an assistant professor in the Law College, on March 22 and then issued him a show-cause notice to explain his position for leading a procession of students and delivering an objectionable speech in the university.

The assistant professor then filed a writ petition in the PHC, saying he was issued a show-cause notice and an inquiry launched on March 17 to assess the entire process of admission till declaration of final result of his LLM degree. He argued it was based on mala fide intention, as he had accused the vice-chancellor of plagiarism and approached the Higher Education Commission (HEC) and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa governor in this regard.

A division bench of the high court headed by Chief Justice Ejaz Afzal Khan had passed an order on April 6 that stated: "Since the petitioner has an effective, adequate and efficacious remedy of appeal before the syndicate under Section 39 of the UoP (Amendments) Act, 1974, we would not like to intervene at this stage. However, we instead of dismissing this petition treat it as an appeal before the syndicate and direct the office to send it thereto for decision in accordance with law. Till then no adverse action shall be taken against the petitioner. Needless to say that the vice-chancellor shall not preside over the meeting of the syndicate hearing the appeal and this petition is thus disposed of in the above terms."

The UoP had filed the petition through senior lawyer Qazi Muhammad Anwar. It stated that the high court having found that the writ petition was not competent and was premature and thus could not converted into a departmental appeal under Section 39 of UoP Act 1974 and referred the same to the syndicate.

It said in the petition that the high court could not direct the referred appeal to be placed before syndicate, as it is not functional because of UoP (Amendment) Act 2010 and the new senate as well as the syndicate have not been constituted.

The UoP also questioned that the high court could not assume "mala fide" on the part of the vice-chancellor without issuing him notice and without hearing him. It also raised the question that the high court could not direct that the meeting of the syndicate in which the referred appeal of the respondent professor would be considered be not presided by the VC.

The petition said that in order to keep the university campus clean from all sort of political activities, the Governor's House on April 1 issued strict directives to the varsities that there should be no political activity on the campus. It directed VCs to take strict action against the violators.

The petition stated that the respondent teacher on March 17 gave statement to a newspaper in which he levelled plagiarism charge against the VC. According to the UoP, the Supreme Court would take up the petition for hearing within five days.

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Varsity rejects charges by suspended teacher as mala fide
Peshawar: The University of Peshawar (UoP) has rejected as baseless the charges levelled by a suspended teacher who had accused certain top officials of the university administration of threatening him.

Mohammad Zubair, a suspended teacher of the Law College, University of Peshawar, had written a letter to the commandant of Campus Police recently stating that he had been receiving life threats from the Vice-Chancellor Prof Dr Azmat Hayat Khan and other officials after he exposed the alleged plagiarism by the vice-chancellor.

The university administration in a statement issued here said an independent inquiry was conducted after Zubair claimed that he had received life threats.

It said the inquiry committee comprising senior professors including Prof Dr Adnan Sarwar Khan, Principal Law College, Prof Dr Misal Zada, Law College, Dr Fazalur Rehman, provost, and Ishtiaqullah Khan, director administration, filed its report recently and it was then submitted to the Governor Masood Kausar, who is also chancellor of the university.

The university clarification said it was for the first time in the history of the University of Peshawar that a committee asked the vice-chancellor and the registrar to explain their position regarding an allegation against them.

It said the issue between Zubair and Tariq Afghan, who led a group of students that met Zubair in the Law College, was actually about messages posted on the Facebook.

The statement by the university said: "Tariq Afghan told the committee that he and his friends got angry due to the insulting messages posted by Zubair on the Facebook against him and his friends. He said the vice-chancellor, registrar and Dr Ahmed Ali Ajez, a lecturer at the Pashto Department, had no involvement whatsoever in the issue."

The statement said the vice-chancellor, registrar and Ahmed Ali Ajez were unnecessarily dragged into the matter as link could not be established between the accusation and the facts.

The university spokesman said Zubair had been suspended in another case, adding it seemed he wanted to defame the vice-chancellor and the registrar.

It contended that Zubair was unable to prove his allegations even though he was provided opportunities to do so. It said the inquiry committee was of the unanimous opinion that the allegations were levelled on mala fide basis as Zubair wanted to settle scores with the vice-chancellor and the registrar.

Regarding the LLM degree of the suspended teacher, the university maintained that the issue was raised by one Usman Ali Khan some 15 months ago following Zubair's promotion as assistant professor. "Usman was of the opinion that Zubair's LLM degree was a fake and he must not be promoted as assistant professor. A fact-finding committee of the university has recommended his degree for cancellation," the university statement added. The news

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