17th Commonwealth Edu conference | Pakistani students' deportation

Over 800 delegates to attend 17th Commonwealth education conference
Islamabad, May 06: Commonwealth Education Ministers and senior officials will meet in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia from 15-19 June for their triennial conference to discuss ways and means to promote and enhance educational facilities and improve literacy rate in the Commonwealth countries.

According to Commonwealth Secretariat the theme for the 17th Conference of Commonwealth Education Ministers is "Education in the Commonwealth: Towards and Beyond Global Goals and Targets".

The broad theme for 2009 looks at education in the Commonwealth, and its work towards achieving the 'Education For All' and the Millennium Development Goals.

Commonwealth Secretary-General Kamalesh Sharma highlighting the importance of the conference said, "Achievement of global education goals will depend on progress made in the Commonwealth."

Worldwide, about 73 million children never even go to primary school, and the majority of these are girls.

He said, "Although significant progress has been made but still global and national inequalities persist. Governments need to tackle these inequalities, and donors need to meet their commitments."

The meeting, which includes parallel forums for teachers, civil society, business, and others, university vice-chancellors and young people, is expected to attract some 800 delegates from all over the Commonwealth.

This year also marks 50 years since Education Ministers first met in Oxford, recognising half a century of co-operation between member states on key educational issues.

The keynote speaker for the ministerial meeting will be Nahas Angula, Prime Minister of Namibia. App

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Students contesting deportation seek educational facility
London: The legal team assisting the 10 Pakistani students fighting deportation is negotiating with the border authorities for providing educational facilities to the detainees while they await the normally lengthy legal process to complete. The legal team is also said to be trying to enable those of the 10 who have completed their courses to appear in their final examinations while in detention.

The 10 students were arrested early last month on suspicion of being involved in plotting terrorist attacks in the UK, but released for want of actionable evidence and handed over to border authorities for deportation.

The students went into appeal against deportation orders and are now awaiting their cases to come up for hearing.

The UK authorities are said to have taken the position that out of the 10 only three were genuine students while the rest were alleged to have obtained student visas on false documents with no record of admission in any of the registered institutions in the UK and were found to be working without the valid permission.

Sources close to the legal team of the 10 students said that even if that were true, the UK authorities had no right to stigmatise them with terror charges for which the UK government needed to tender a public apology and grant reasonable monetary compensation to the aggrieved students.

The official position of the UK has not changed since the 10 students were arrested as only on Monday Foreign Secretary David Miliband while talking to the media after his meeting with Pakistan's foreign minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi implied that the 10 were arrested on some concrete evidence which meant that there was evidence of their involvement in the so-called terror plot but that evidence was not strong enough to stand in the court of law.

However, the students' legal team is said to believe that the arrests were made on some false tip-off from some dubious but motivated informant having some personal grudge against all or some of the arrested students.

"If they had even an iota of evidence even remotely linking them to the so-called terror plot they would certainly have shared it with the Pakistani authorities and would not have insisted that if these students were deported to Pakistan they would not be persecuted," said Sibghatuallah Kadri QC. Dawn

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Students exhibit oratorical skills in French language
Islamabad: Students of National University of Modern Languages (NUML) enthralled the audience with their excellent oratorical skills in French language at a speech contest held here on Tuesday.

Seven students from Diploma, Certificate and BAML courses exhibited their proficiency in French language on different topics. The contest started with a speech and colourful visual presentation on the topic 'We are a courageous nation' by one of the orator Major Ehtasham.

Other speakers enlightened the participants with their vibrant views on the topics including 'Men are from Mars and Women from Venus,' 'Why I am learning French,' 'Money versus happiness,' 'Man has touched the boundaries of space but not the edge of humanity' and 'France for me.'

Among the contestants, Saba secured first position, Major Ehtesham came second and Sana Zaheer obtained third position.

French Ambassador Daniel Jouanneau congratulated the students for their extraordinary presentations and said that the students have gained sufficient competence in speaking French language. He also appreciated the efforts of the faculty of university for having special focus on French language.

Language is a strong mode of communication and carries great importance in cultures. Today's world is the world of linguistics and learning foreign language was essential to cope with the present day challenges.

French language has its prominence after English language in five continents. French language is widely spoken in the world after English language and it has gained the status of international language.

This university is contributing a lot in training the global citizens. In the year 2009, the best choice is to learn English and French language among all the languages, he said.

Rector NUML Aziz Ahmed Khan said that French Department in NUML was second department to be opened in 1969 when it was just an institute not university.

French language is a rich language and it has produced renowned writers, poets and scholars in the world.

NUML has various MoUs signed with many French universities across the world and there is ongoing cooperation between NUML and other French universities.

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Roots School System high-achievers get awards
Islamabad: The Roots School System organised an award distribution ceremony for high-achievers in the 'A' level examinations, says a press release issued here on Tuesday.

The awards are given to those students who attain distinction in one or more aspects of the criteria that cover scholastic ability, successful university admission, academic achievement, high achievement in 'O' and 'A' levels and Cambridge Examinations UK, leadership, extra-curricular accomplishment, scientific research or any other creative talent.

This year, 200 Roots School System graduates got placements in the world top universities, including Harvard, Stanford, Princeton, Yale, MIT, Oxford, Cambridge, London School of Economics & Political Science and many other Ivy League colleges. Some students have received scholarships of $50,000 per annum for four years.

One of the Roots students, Murtaza Murad Rind, has been awarded the Reach Oxford Scholarship of 200,000 pounds for four years of study in Oxford University until master's. This is a prestigious scholarship and a great honour for an institution, student and the counsellor, as it is awarded to only one student from the whole world.

Federal Minister for Parliamentary Affairs Dr. Babar Awan, the chief guest on the occasion, was impressed with the excellence of the Roots students and their world-class achievements.

The minister appreciated the school on its success and congratulated high-achievers by presenting them certificates and mementos.

The chief guest also acknowledged the guidance of faculty members as well as the school's regional director and student counsellor Chaudhry Faisal Mushtaq for providing global exposure to students.

Earlier, Roots School System Director Chaudhry Faisal Mushtaq gave a presentation on the school's philosophy. The ceremony was attended by parents of high-achievers.

On the occasion, Muhammad bin Naveed, a student who is accepted by the Duke University in its undergraduate programme along with a scholarship of

US $51,000 per annum, talked about the transformation and thanked his institution for providing him the global experience and a multiple disciplinary approach towards learning. The News

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