Scholarship holders left in the lurch
Islamabad, June 15: Nearly 10,000 students on scholarships have not received their stipends from April to pay their boarding expense and tuition fee, the National Assembly Standing Committee on Human Rights learnt on Thursday.
The future of some 3,500 students availing university and Higher Education Commission (HEC) scholarships is particularly at stake who are studying in foreign countries, said Director Human Resource HEC, Wasim Hashmi.
"How can students focus on their studies when they have to worry about paying university fees or where their next meal will come from?" said Chairman of the committee MNA Riaz Fatyana describing the situation as a major human rights violation.
Wasim Hashmi further said that out of the 3,500 students on foreign scholarships, 1,500 were sent by universities and 2,000 by the HEC. And out of the total 10,000 students on scholarships, 2,000 hailed from the Federally Administered Tribal Areas (Fata). The students received between Rs12, 000 to Rs15, 000 stipends.
The meeting had to be cut short due to the on-going parliament's session but MNA Riaz Fatyana gave directions to the secretary Ministry of Finance to ensure that the funds were released immediately and a report of the same should be submitted in the next meeting.
The committee unanimously suggested that HEC/universities should relax policies and wave off all charges including admission and examination fees to students from war/conflict-affected regions in the west of the country until peace prevailed.
"And it should not hurt money-minting private universities to induct a few students from the war-affected zones free of charge," said MNA Riaz Fatyana.
It was also a matter of concern for the members that the universities' faculty members had not received their pay despite two weeks into June. Riaz Fatyana described it a serious concern and said the recently held Vice Chancellors' meeting also pointed out the issue.
The Ministry of Finance was yet to release Rs3.2 billion for the three months quarter from April to June.
MNAs Dr Attiya Inayatullah and Jameela Gilani urged the chairperson of the meeting to take notice of threats to Asma Jahangir.
All members expressed support and solidarity for the lawyer. The chair then directed that secretaries Ministry of Defence and Interior be called in the next meeting to brief the members on the situation besides inviting Asma Jahangir. Dawn
RBISE bans underage registration
Rawalpindi: The Rawalpindi Board of Intermediate and Secondary Education (RBISE) has imposed ban on the registration of 9th class students who are under 13 years of age. According to information, the board authority announced that until June 30, all those students who are under 13 years of age are considered ineligible for registration. They have to wait for one year to get themselves registered with the board.
Meanwhile, All Pakistan Private Schools Management Association has strongly condemned this move, saying that thousands of students across Punjab would be deprived of their right to appear in the examination. The association warned the board administration that they would challenge the decision in a court of law, if the board failed to withdraw it. Daily times
'Classroom tension': AIMC student tortured twice in a week
Lahore: A 3rd year (MBBS) student of Allama Iqbal Medical College was attacked and tortured twice during the last week after he allegedly passed some 'offensive remark's against a fellow female student.
The 'minor incident' has now become so serious issue as the 3rd year class has split into two groups - one in favour of the female student and the other backing Umar Razzaq.
Umer said at least five to six unidentified people intercepted and tortured him at Faisal Chowk on Thursday. They fled the scene later hurling life threats at him.
Umar along with other fellows approached the AIMC Principal Office and brought the matter to the notice of the administration.
He informed AIMC principal Prof Dr Javed Akram that it was the second attack on him during the last week. Earlier, he said an armed student belonging to the opposite group had intercepted him on the premises of the college and threatened him with dire consequences.
The presence of armed students in the college irked the AIMC administration which immediately contacted police and beefed up security on the campus.
Prof Akram has referred the matter to the AIMC disciplinary committee headed by Prof Dr Shahida Khwaja to initiate proceedings to expel students involved in illegal activities.
"We have deployed additional armed personnel at the entrances of both the college and the hospital, at the duty places of the students and also on the premises of the college besides hostels", AIMC/Jinnah Hospital security chief Col Iftikhar Cheema retired told this reporter.
He said a complaint had been submitted to the Garden Town police for lodging a criminal case against unidentified men who tortured the student. Dawn
UHS to send 10 PhD students every year to Liverpool varsity
Lahore: The University of Health Sciences (UHS) will send 10 PhD students every year to study at the University of Liverpool (UoL), UK.
A formal agreement was signed here at UHS on Thursday by UHS Vice Chancellor Prof IA Naveed and UoL Executive Pro-Vice Chancellor Prof Ian Greer. UoL Director of Postgraduate Studies at the Centre for Lifelong Learning, Prof Ian Willis, Director of Studies in Learning and Teaching Dr Janet Strivens, UHS Registrar, Dr Asad Zaheer and Controller of Examinations, Prof Junaid S Khan were also present.
The agreement says UoL will waive research support fee in various academic programmes and will also provide a scholarship to each Pakistani student equal to tuition fee for the full term.
The candidates will be interviewed through video conference/Skype by a panel of Liverpool faculty. For UHS VC this is just the beginning of what he hopes will be a long and fruitful association.
Prof Naveed further said that interview had already been done and the project had the backing of the British Council and the Higher Education Commission of Pakistan.
Dr Willis Said, "It's a showcase for the certain kind of expertise Liverpool has to offer in an international setting and as a result of this we are starting to get enquiries from other universities for similar projects.
Prof Junaid said, "It is building on our vision of positioning ourselves as a global university where we are reaching out to institutions all over the world".
He further said that University of Liverpool is a member of famous Russell Group which is an association of 20 major research - intensive universities of the United Kingdom.
Blood donation: Special Assistant to Chief Minister Punjab on Health Salman Rafique has stressed the need for promoting blood donation culture in the society for saving precious human lives. He said that one pint of blood could save a precious life of a patient which was a great form of worship.
He expressed these views while leading the awareness on the eve of World Blood Donors' Day which was organised by Institute of Blood Transfusion Punjab. The walk started from the main gate of PIMH, Jail Road, and ended at Racecourse Park. Besides Commissioner Lahore Rafique Malik, Chief Social Mobiliser Punjab Shaista Pervaiz Malik, officers of different government departments, Director Blood Transfusion Prof. Mehfooz-ur-Rehman, representative of NGOs, civil society and a large number of men and women participated in the walk.
On this occasion, Kh. Salman Rafique said the objective of holding the walk was to acknowledge the humanitarian services of blood donors. Kh. Salman Rafique observed that a very few people in the society donated blood, so there was a need to promote awareness among the masses. The news