Plagiarism: action imminent against KU teachers
Karachi, May 20: The recent decision by the University of Karachi (KU) Syndicate to punish plagiarists Prof Jalaluddin Noori, Dr Najma Sultana and Dr Saeed Arayen of the faculties of the departments of Islamic Studies, Pharmacy and Chemistry respectively, has brought positive response from the majority of teachers.
The teachers' fraternity has heaved a sigh of relief and expressed their hope that other plagiarists – after their cases have been investigated and proved – would also be punished to send the message loud and clear: Plagiarism is not welcome at the university.
An emergency meeting, held by the Karachi University Teachers Society (KUTS), made it clear that although KUTS was responsible for safeguarding the rights of teachers, it would not condone their unlawful actions that included plagiarism. One senior professor went as far as to equate plagiarism with murder that ought to be punishable under Pakistan Penal Code 302. A Professor at the Faculty of Arts chided the 'Exonerated' verdict of the earliest Plagiarism Committee against the same trio. The Committee consisted of Pro Vice Chancellor (VC) Dr Akhlaq Ahmed, Dr Muhammad Qaiser, Faculty of Science Dean and now Federal Urdu University of Arts, Science & Technology (FUUAST) VC and Faculty of Arts Dean Dr Shamsuddin. Interestingly, Dr Akhlaq Ahmed was the only member at the Syndicate who voiced his support for Prof Noori in the recently held Syndicate meeting.
Some teachers and students expressed surprise that the plagiarism case of Dr Nuzhat Ahmed, a professor and Centre of Molecular Genetics Director, who is retired but currently rehired by the university administration, was not on the agenda at the Syndicate meeting, as she too had committed other irregularities in the past.
The curtain on Dr Nuzhat's plagiarism was raised when Dr Rich Roberts, authority on 'Restriction Enzymes', who was working at Cold Spring Harbor, New York, wrote letters to the KU Faculty of Science Dean Dr Syed Irtifaq Ali and VC Dr Manzooruddin Ahmed in 1987, informing them that a research paper supposedly written by Dr Ahmed and her MSc student Fawwad Farooqui, and published in the journal of Pakistan Council of Scientific and Industrial Research (PCSIR), was not their work. Dr Roberts, who was awarded a Nobel Prize in Medicine (Physiology) in 1993, accused Dr Ahmed of plagiarising the work of a team of researchers working under Dr Riazuddin Ahmed at PCSIR, Lahore Centre. Dr Nuzhat Ahmed was an Assistant Professor at the Department of Genetics at the time. The News
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MS/PhD, MS (Surgery) and MD (Medicine) Exam forms
Karachi: The University of Karachi has informed MS/PhD and MS (Surgery) and MD (Medicine) students 2008 that the examination forms and fee will be accepted till May 23.
The university's registrar announced on Tuesday that the examination forms were available at the BASR section during the office hours.
The forms and along with the prescribed fee can be submitted at the campus branch of the NBP and UBL. App
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Government high schools in Karachi teachers' test
Karachi: A written test for the recruitment of teachers for government high schools in the Karachi region will be conducted at the Expo Centre on May 26 at 10am.
About 5,000 candidates have been registered for the test. It was earlier held on April 24 at the National Stadium. But the Sindh University's testing service cancelled it on account of mismanagement and cheating.
The written test for the appointment of teachers in government primary schools of the Karachi region and 11 other districts of Sindh will be held on May 24. In Karachi alone, more than 17,500 candidates have applied for the post of primary school teacher. Dawn
30,000 candidates appear in PST test
Khairpur: More than 30,000 candidates appeared in the primary schoolteacher (PST) test in the Sukkur region on Tuesday. The University of Sindh, Jamshoro, conducted the test in nine districts of Sindh, including Khairpur, Sukkur, Shikarpur and Ghotki. In Khairpur, 17,984 candidates appeared in the test. In all, 9,260 candidates appeared in the test in Shikarpur. In Sukkur, 7,974 candidates appeared in the test, while 7,127 candidates appeared in the test in Ghotki. The News
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Our national language
Every nation adopts a national language. Let us first understand what a national language is? It is a language which is commonly spoken and understood by the majority of the population and facilitates intercommunication. Our father of the nation Quaid-e-Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah adopted Urdu as our national language. This particular aspect requires further analysis. Evolution and development of Urdu as a language has a long historical background.
Let us first briefly study the historical development of Urdu. The Muslim invaders of India, up to the Mughal Empire, were mostly Persian speaking. These invaders, therefore, officialised Persian as the state language. In India Hindi was the mother tongue of the people. Hindi is an ancient language and was written and spoken in most parts of India. To facilitate the locals in the written expression the invaders extended the privilege of writing Hindi in Persian. For easy recapitulation the British invaders after the Mughal Empire officialised English as the state language.
The British therefore extended a similar privilege of writing Urdu in English and termed it Roman Urdu. Roman Urdu remained in use even in Pakistan for Bengalis till 1971. Similarly the Persian speaking invaders termed Hindi written in Persian as Urdu meaning Lashkar or language for troops. Urdu is a Hindi dialect written with Persian alphabets. Hindi speaking population at that time used maximum Persian vocabulary in their Urdu composition to facilitate easy understanding by the invaders posted in different administrative echelons. Even today it is seen that literary Urdu is dominated by Persian vocabulary while verbal expression remains as Hindi spoken today. During this period a number of Hindus embraced Islam and joined the invader forces.
All Hindus and converted Muslims who joined the invader forces used to write their point of view in Urdu. Urdu therefore became a popular way of expression with the Persian invaders. With the passage of time the converted community started writing Hindi cultural poems and songs in Urdu to make the invaders follow the Hindu religious ethics. The Persian speaking invaders gradually were attracted to their religious ethics of dancing, singing, glamorous dresses and body display of Hindu women. To merge into the Hindu community for luxuries the invaders also learnt Urdu. These trends therefore promoted the development of Urdu. Pakistan was founded on 14th August 1947 in two parts - East and West Pakistan.
It is nowhere in history why Urdu was adopted as national language by Quaid-e-Azam although he himself could hardly speak it. He knew that the native languages of NWFP was Pushto, Punjab – Punjabi, Balochistan – Balochi, Sindh – Sindhi and East Pakistan – Bengali. One reason for adopting Urdu as national language could be that majority of the bureaucratic immigrants on Independence were from that part of India which was the birth place of Urdu.
It is a fair possibility that they influenced Quaid to adopt Urdu as the national language. Since Quaid adopted and announced that Urdu would be the national language, all acknowledged it although Urdu was not the mother tongue of any province of East and West Pakistan. At that time in West Pakistan Urdu and in East Pakistan Bengali was taught as optional subjects like other optional languages i.e. Persian, Sindhi, and Punjabi, etc.
The medium of official communication was English and medium of instruction in the education institutions was English dominated. With the passage of time West Pakistan adopted Urdu as the medium of instruction at the lower level and Bengali in East Pakistan. Later East Pakistan did not accept Urdu as their language and officially adopted Bengali. However, they were given the privilege of expressing their text in Roman Urdu.
In the army soldiers from East Pakistan kept this practice till 1971 and Roman Urdu was one of the subjects taught during their routine training. Let us first review the status of our national language in the present Pakistan. Generally it has been seen that till today except Punjab no province has so far accepted Urdu as their lingua franca. Though it is a harsh expression but we need to analyse this dispassionately. Majority of the population converse amongst themselves in their native languages i.e. Pushto, Punjabi, Balochi and Sindhi.
Since people are taught Urdu at school level therefore at lower levels it is used as a written expression in unofficial documentation. In official documents at higher levels English is adopted as a means of both written and verbal expression. On the basis of above analysis there is a big question mark – what is the status of our national language? What advantages have we achieved so far from this language? We have adopted Urdu as our National Language.
Every region and province of the country started learning this language. In certain areas people started speaking Urdu with their children right from their birth despite having different mother tongues. Resultantly some children now cannot converse in their own mother tongue except Urdu. Still it has been seen that even after adopting this language for over 60 years in every province even educated people cannot fluently speak Urdu. In certain areas they always make mistakes in singular/plural and masculine/feminine while expressing something in Urdu.
Generally in every region people speak Urdu in their own native dialect. Less educated classes and according to the local environment people speak Urdu using the vocabulary of their native language. An effort was made to float the idea of transforming such Urdu as Pak Urdu. It is worth mentioning here that English has also been transformed by various countries like US, Australia, Canada, South Africa, etc. to suit their regional requirement.
Unfortunately our education institutions do not patronise this form of Urdu. They insist that correct Urdu is the one inherited from the Ganges Basin. They do not realize the real meaning of Urdu and its inheritance. At present the "Lashkar" of Pakistan is NWFP, Punjab, Balochistan and Sindh. Commonly used colloquial words in these regional languages must be accepted in Urdu to transform Urdu of the Indus Basin. However, in defecto we practically use Urdu of the Indus Basin even in our media.
If you watch TV dramas transmitted by the TV centres of each region and province only the dialect is Urdu while their expression is dominated by their native language. In other words in spite of learning Urdu right from our schools we have generally not yet absorbed the spirit of this language and have not yet patronised it. They prefer to express in English to get absorbed in all regional environment and official meetings.
Urdu as a language was generally developed in 18th and 19th Century in Central India. Mostly the sponsors of this language were poets. Official language of India was Persian. Sophisticated Urdu composition and poetry was blended with Persian. In most of the Urdu poetry of 19th and 20th century it is observed that mostly Persian vocabulary is used. During the British Rule in India English became the official language.
Urdu was mostly sponsored by the poets and extensively practised in singing and entertainment forums. Practically in no scientific or technological research work Urdu was used. However Urdu expression and Urdu speaking community, mostly the converted Muslims and public servants were known for their politeness. This trend thus transformed and developed their personality traits as docile in their dealings with the British rulers and Hindu majority. Communities possessing aggressive attitude were mostly Gurkhas, Sikhs, Sindhis and various tribes of South India.
All the ruling dynasties and groups were Persian, Gurmukhi, Sansikrat, Sindhi, Gorkhas and Punjabi speaking. External conquerors were mostly Persian, Arabic and English speaking. It has also been seen through analysis that Mughal Empire fell down when they got involved in the luxuries of singing and dancing because of Hindu culture and poets. We have already analysed the sponsors of poetry and songs, which were instrumental in promoting dances and luxuries.
Since our verbal expression is Hindi dominated, as spoken today, therefore Hindu culture has started dominating us. In all aspects of culture i.e. dress, traditions, habits, and even our recreational activities are closer to Hindu culture. These psychological influences are primarily because of our similarity and commonality in our verbal expression adopted in our national language. There is nothing wrong in adopting one language to bring conformity within the State.
In India linguistic, regional, ethnic and religious diversities have been resolved politically. It has almost forty-six mother tongues spoken in different regions. The largest majority however speaks Hindi, which has been adopted as their national language. To resolve the diversities they have officially permitted both English and Hindi in their parliament proceedings and official intercommunications. In our case pragmatically Urdu is not the lingua franca of any province of the country. Still all the provinces learn Urdu as a new language which is lingually the same in speech as Hindi. This commonality does inject the cultural influx of Hinduism in our Muslim society.
If the nation has to learn more languages other than their lingua franca the intelligentsia must consider alternatives which help in social and economic development of the nation. Similarity in verbal expression does merge the communities in similar environment. Commonality of environment transforms identity in culture irrespective of religious belief. If we analyse various aspects of culture in comparison with Hindus one finds remarkable similarity. First are the traditions. We follow the rituals of solemnising our marriages. Moyoons, Mendis, dressing up and exhibition of brides in glamorous dress with heavy jewellery and lavish spending by the girl parents are done according to Hindus traditions.
Even on demise ceremonies of holding Qul, seventh day and chehlum functions are all done in Hinduism? Let us compare the dresses, especially of our womenfolk, are similar to the Hindus. Hindu women wear the dresses as displayed on their Devies statues. They dance in these dresses to fulfil their religious ethics. In our society the women folk have almost forgotten the concept of Pardha and dress up like them to project moderation in their cultural values.
Our hobbies and entertainment habits of singing, dancing, celebration of basant and Shab-e-Barat like divalees are similar to Hindu traditions. Cultural identity is amply visible and proudly displayed on the national TV programmes. No effort is made to proudly follow and promote our own regional cultures. We as a nation must decide whether these cultural trends are Islamic in nature. If these are not then these must be considered illegal. There are a number of religious programmes on the national TV channels in which these un-Islamic trends are discussed and explained. Ironically still no implementation or adoption of Islamic teachings are followed by the nation.
If we are convinced that these cultural activities are similar to Hinduism and are against Islamic then all should, individually and collectively curb them with national spirit. This should not be taken as extremism. Islam is a very broad based religion. It professes peace, harmony and sobriety by following the correct path. These trends would fulfil all the requirements of modern trends of the society till the dooms day. Certainly Islam denounces Satanic luxuries for which Satan has given undertaking to Allah that he would lead astray His believers from His path.
Remember we have our Iman in the Day of Judgement. We should develop and follow the culture as desired by Allah in His code of life bestowed on us - The Quran. With all the respect to the founder of the nation still we should analyse other options to promote and accelerate development of our country both technically and psychologically.
Dispassionately, we see Urdu is not the lingua franca of any province. However, in certain areas of the provinces there are Urdu, Persian, Brohi, etc. speaking communities. If we have adopted Urdu as our national language because of its rich script, it is not true as one of our Provincial languages Sindhi is far older and has richer script. Being a Muslim country if we assume that Urdu helps in better understanding of our religion, it is also not true as our Holy Quran and Prayer both are in Arabic which at present we read without understanding. Objectively we are ignorant Muslims. If we think that Urdu helps in developing friendly relations with neighbours and Middle East countries, it is also not true because these countries are Persian, Pushto and Arabic speaking. In most of the developed world English is mostly spoken or understood and in financially rich countries Arabic is spoken.
In other words Urdu is neither spoken nor written in any country of the world except Pakistan, which has also artificially donned this language cloak. We have neither gained technological advantage nor diplomatic ascendancy through Urdu. The only area where we have gained is promotion of poetry and musical expression. In this field also Hindustan has gained more by using similar vocal expression and writing in their own Hindi script. With this backdrop it is suggested that still Urdu should be retained as a national language.
We have spent over sixty years in teaching this national language to our masses and to develop unity among all the provinces. Pak Urdu or Urdu of the Indus Basin should, however, be officially adopted. To remain abreast of the developed world in technical and diplomatic fields English language must be retained as a compulsory subject in the education curricula. However, inclusion of Arabic also in our education curricula is strongly recommended. Generally, people would willingly study Arabic because of their religious affiliation with this language.
Though inclusion in the education curricula appears to be a little strange but it would have very useful implications for our social sector. After studying Arabic in the schools the young generation would not only read and understand Quran but would also follow the Holy rituals without blindly following the religious teachers. People would prefer to send their children to the schools instead of madrasas. Religious teachers having requisite qualification in Arabic language would be absorbed in schools and colleges to teach Arabic language along with other subjects.
Knowledge of this language would facilitate all shades of our working class to get absorbed in the Arabic speaking states on different jobs. This would foster our economy through receipt of their earnings in foreign exchange. With the passage of time it would strengthen the cultural barrier between the Islamic Republic of Pakistan and Hindustan and curb their cultural influence on our society. -By Brig (R) Muhammad Jamil Khan, email@example.com (F.P report)Your Comments
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