Dawood Engineering College clash in student groups

Student groups clash at DCET
Karachi, May 27: Two student groups clashed at the Dawood College of Engineering and Technology (DCET) on Wednesday. The clash broke out between Jamaat-e-Islami's student wing Islami Jamiat-e-Talaba and the Punjabi Students Association while students were busy enjoying the moment as their exam paper was cancelled. Some students also resorted to aerial firing resulting in a traffic jam. Jamshed Quarter Police Station SHO Tariq Mehmood said the clash was not a serious incident while two students suffered minor injuries. Daily times

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Education minister slams teachers' associations
Karachi: The role of teachers' associations in the province came under strong criticism in the Sindh Assembly on Wednesday as Senior Minister Pir Mazharul Haq accused them of "destroying children's education".

"Half of the teachers do not turn up but draw salaries while others do not take classes on the pretext of strikes," said the senior minister, who holds the portfolio of the education department, in response of a point of order raised by Leader of the Opposition Jam Madad Ali.

On a point of order, Jam Madad Ali raised the issue of the lower grade employees recruited in the education department in 2007 on a contractual basis who he said were being retrenched and requested the government that they should not be rendered unemployed.

He also drew the attention of the house towards a long-standing demand of teachers that in other three provinces teachers were being paid a teaching allowance and the same should also be given in Sindh.

Speaking on the floor of the house, the senior minister not only came down hard on teachers' welfare associations, but also held the city and district governments responsible for destroying the education system in Sindh, as the education department had been devolved to the local governments under retired General Musharraf's devolution of power plan system.

He said the office-bearers of the teachers' welfare associations were misguiding the teachers as acting like trade unions and besides destroying education of children, these associations were betraying the Sindh cause.

He said that in the past recruitment was made on political grounds and in violation of rules and despite the fact that the contractual employees did not deserve regularisation of their service the government would consider their cases sympathetically.

He said a committee had been formed to give a teaching allowance and time scale to the teachers.

The committee headed by him and including secretaries of the finance and education departments and representatives of the teachers' bodies had recommended adoption of the formula of Balochistan.

The summary of the committee was still under consideration but the teachers' associations misguided the teachers that the chief minister had rejected the summary, he said.

The senior minister recalled that the Pakistan People's Party government had not only accepted the demands of the teachers, but also withdrew cases that were registered against them in the era of the previous government. "But children were being punished for our being pro-teachers. In Ghotki children were brought on road which was not the work of teachers."

He said that although the salaries of private schools teachers were far low compared to those in government service, they gave full time to schoolchildren. However, government teachers did not discharge their responsibilities, he charged.

He said that the devolution of the education department to the city and district governments had destroyed education. "We have asked the city and district governments to provide a list of teachers and action should be initiated against those who have been absent."

After the minister's statement, Jam Madad Ali asked why the summary of teachers' allowance sent in 2009 was not yet approved. Should it be taken as rejected, he questioned.

He also said that those promoted in schools as head masters and administrative officers were of junior scale, which was one of the reasons for mismanagement in schools.

The education minister replied that the promotion was the business of the city and district governments and until the system was chan-ged, the city and district governments would be responsible.

However, the government had given them a policy for not promoting juniors over those officials having a senior scale, he added.

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Lecturers go on hunger strike
Karachi: Members of the Sindh Professors' Lecturers' Association (SPLA) went on a hunger strike on Wednesday against the government's failure to meet their demands regarding the national pay scale, salaries and time scales.

SPLA President Athar Hussain Mirza told PPI that the government was excluding teachers from the national pay scale and imposing a separate educational pay scale based on subjects and place of appointment.

He said that professors and lecturers were protesting across the country against these measures from the platform of All Pakistan Professors and Lecturers Association (APPLA).

In this regard hunger strikes, press conferences and demonstrations are being held in all the four provincial capitals and Azad Kashmir.

Mr Mirza said that the representatives of the APPLA had met the federal education minister and secretary on May 12 and informed them about the teachers' reservations and that the APPLA would oppose any such measures.

He said that 95 per cent students join government colleges after matric and only five per cent go to the private sector. Some elements in the government wanted to privatise the education sector for their petty interests and they were hatching conspiracies against education and teachers, he alleged.

He said that the Higher Education Commission should focus on the genuine problems of education instead of non-issues. He noted that the salaries of the employees of universities are six times higher than their counterparts in colleges.

He said that APPLA will announce its future strategy on June 21 in Islamabad.

In reply to a question about increasing foreign influence in the education department, he said that institutions like the World Bank wanted to deprive the lower class of the country of education.

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Cabinet approves varsity status for Sindh Madressah
Islamabad: The federal cabinet on Wednesday agreed in principle to the grant of charter of university status to Sindh Madressahtul Islam, Karachi.

It, however, linked the final approval to a scrutiny by the Implementation Commission on the 18th Amendment and subsequent resubmission.

Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani presided over the meeting.

It is the first action to have been referred to the nine-member parliamentary commission, headed by Senator Mian Raza Rabbani.

Mr Rabbani said that since education was a provincial subject, the commission would now look into the matter whether the issue pertained to institutions of higher learning, a subject of federal legislative list part II, or part of the province.

The cabinet condemned blasphemous caricatures on a 'specific website' and asked the ministry of information technology to ensure that such blasphemous material was not allowed to appear on the internet.

The cabinet, which had deferred the final approval of Haj policy in its previous meeting till settlement of air fare issue between the ministry of religious affairs and PIA, did not discuss the matter on Wednesday.

The minister for religious affairs said that re-submission of Haj policy in the cabinet was no more mandatory as it had been approved in principle and only minor issues needed to be settled.

The cabinet praised return to its fold of the Federal Minister for Defence Production, Sardar Abdul Qayyum Jatoi, who had resigned after the defeat of a PPP candidate in a recent by-election.

The cabinet approved, in principle, the Draft Pakistan Savings Bill, 2010, and constituted a cabinet committee for further deliberation and improvement of some of its clauses.

It also approved up-gradation of the National Institute of Science and Technical Education (NISTE), Islamabad, into a degree institution. Dawn

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Proteomics lectures at KU
Karachi: The National Center for Proteomics at the University of Karachi (KU) is organizing a series of lectures by Dr Azeem Hasan, Director Mass Spectroscopy Facility, Louisiana University, USA. In this regard, first lecture of the series will be held on Monday, May 31st, 2010 at 10:30 am. on Identification and Characterization of Proteins in Biological Complexes. The news

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54 girls' schools closed in Nara since long
Khairpur: The closure of 54 schools since last few years has halted the education process of girls in Nara taluka.

Some 53 primary and one middle school, all located in the desert area, are closed since some time.

Ex-nazim, Tajal Sharif Union Council, Sufi Qalab Ali has proposed appointing boys with matriculation certificate as teachers in these schools which would revive the learning culture, besides helping school-going children into gaining at least basic education.

EDO Education, Khairpur, Amanullah Bhayo said schools faced this situation because of the shortage of female teachers and the National Commission for Human Development was now working towards appointing female teachers in closed schools. He hoped the schools would be reopened soon.

Administrator, Khairpur, Mohammad Abbas Baloch said that a system was being evolved wherein schools of Nara would be reopened area-wise. He said that few schools have begun classes as the OMV Gas Company has provided some teacher.

He said the NCHD and Sindh Education Foundation, besides others were ready to provide teachers for closed schools or meeting their shortage in both boys and girls schools. Dawn

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