UoP fails to make final decision on MA/MSc exam
Peshawar, May 25: The deans committee of the University of Peshawar (UoP) has failed to come up with a final decision whether to delay the MA/MSc examination until September or hold it in accordance with the already given schedule from July 4.
The delay was causing concern among the students and contributing to the tension. The meeting was held on Tuesday and presided over by Vice-Chancellor Prof Dr Azmat Hayat. But due to the absence of the controller examinations, it failed to reach a final decision. Most of the participants, however, gave in writing that the examination should be held as per the given schedule, sources privy to the meeting said. The final decision would be made by the controller examinations on his return from Karachi, they added.
Meanwhile, some students staged a protest and asked the university administration to delay the examination until September. Majority of the students, however, are opposed to the delay in the examination. Those who seek a delay are of the opinion that owing to excessive power outages and long closure of the university on different occasions they could not complete their courses and properly prepare for the examination.
The university administration rejected both the reasons. According to an official, all the hostels have been provided with heavy power generators at a cost of Rs300 million and there was no problem of electricity suspension. "Fifteen generators have been purchased and installed in all the hostels so the students do not suffer because of loadshedding," he added.
Regarding the course of study completion, he said the university had sought details from all the departments and faculties and found a minor problem in the English Department only because the courses were completed in other departments. He was of the opinion that the students seeking delay in the examination were affiliated with different student organisations were using the issue as a political stunt.
The students who want the examination to be held in accordance with the schedule outnumber those seeking delay and are academically stronger than them. They say it would be injustice with them if the examination were put off without any justification.
Some of the students recalled that despite the closure for months of the university following the protest by the faculty last year, the MA/MSc examination was held on time and it were only the devastating floods that forced the administration to postpone the tests for a few papers.
Majority of the female students are of the opinion that they would suffer the most if the examination were delayed. Several girl students told this reporter that it would be extremely difficult for them to continue coming to the university when they have already started their preparations and have made up their minds to appear in the examination in July.
They said they had already been asked by the hostel administration to vacate the hostels soon after the commencement of examination. Moreover, Ramazan would also commence in the first week of August and the girl students would then not be able to remain in hostels. The study of the day scholars would also be affected during Ramazan, they argued.Your Comments
HEC moot on 'Setting Standards for 21st Century'
Islamabad: The first-ever 'National Conference on Setting Standards for 21st Century Pakistan' is being organised by the Higher Education Commission (HEC) here on Thursday.
The conference aims to assemble key stakeholders including parliamentarians, diplomats, entrepreneurs, policy makers, and members of civil society who will provide an impetus leading to a national pledge to be taken to promote university-community and university-industry linkage.
The event, which will showcase the contribution of higher education sector towards nation building, will highlight the significance of sustainability of a progressive research culture, which ensures flow of knowledge to and from the business and the industrial sector.
In this regard, a project for the establishment of business/technology incubators in the universities has been initiated. These incubators would ensure an atmosphere where viable start-up companies/entrepreneurships can grow and prosper. These incubator graduates have the potential to create employment, revitalise neighbourhoods, commercialise new technologies, and strengthen local and national economies.
Incubators have a greater impact on the economy when they maintain ties with the university because of the synergy between three important stakeholders - entrepreneurs, universities, and research scholars.
There is a conscious strive for innovation and commercialisation of the research, which would bring economic prosperity to Pakistan. In order to develop and strengthen the nexus of the universities and the industry, it is important to ensure quality research in areas of importance to industry. Universities must respond to the needs of the economy.
Furthermore, "Science and Technology Parks" are being developed around the world as a means of stimulating start-up and growth of technologically intensive, knowledge-based businesses, and to facilitate the linkages between the researchers and the industrial communities.
The Research & Development Division of the HEC promotes establishment of technology parks throughout the country, and the business incubation centres would augment these parks.
Clerks, teachers to stage sit-in
Islamabad: All Pakistan Clerks Association (APCA) in collaboration with Punjab Teachers Union will stage a sit-in today (Wednesday) in front of the Parliament House to press for their demands.
Addressing a press conference here on Tuesday, APCA President Nazar Hussain Korai demanded of the government to implement what had been written in the report compiled by the Pay and Pension Commission. "Last year, we were given 50% ad hoc relief and a Pay and Pension Commission was constituted on our charter of demands. We have been given full assurance that the recommendations of the commission would be implemented, however, it never happened," he said.
He said that the recommendations of the commission include merger of ad hoc relief in salaries and their revision, an increase in medical allowance up to Rs3,000, in house rent up to 70 per cent and in conveyance allowance up to 200 per cent; payment of group insurance at once after the retirement; restoration of additional promotions that has been given on the basis of high qualification; constitution of clerks foundation, Eid allowance for low-grade government employees and restoration of rest and recreation allowance.
Korai said that the salary of government employees increases once a year despite the fact that the inflation increases with each passing day. "During the ongoing year, the prices of electricity increased by 23 per cent, of diesel by 20 per cent, sugar by 100 per cent, while prices of pulses, cooking oil and other eatables have increased by 100 per cent but the income of government employees remains the same," he said.
He said that whenever they demand relief for clerks, the government starts making lame excuses citing lack of resources, but no decrease in the expenses of Presidency and Prime Minister House is witnessed.
"Today APCA, Punjab Teachers Union, Young Doctors Association, PCS Association are protesting for their rights, but the government is not ready to listen to their demands," he said.
Answering a question, Korai said that it was nothing less than brutality that the lower clerical staff members were getting inhuman salary packages. "When government itself has announced Rs7,000 as minimum wage then why it is not implementing its own announcement," he said.
He informed the media persons that the clerical staff members of grade one to grade 10 are still getting salaries as low as Rs5,000 to Rs6,000. "We demand government to immediately implement the minimum wages orders," he added.
It is pertinent to mention here that APCA had registered its protest last year during a rally, which pressed Finance Minister Abdul Hafeez Sheikh to announce 50 per cent ad hoc relief and constitution of Pay and Pension Commission.
The other office-bearers who were present on the occasion included APCA Secretary General Murad Ali Chachar, Shahzad Manzoor Kiani, Punjab Teachers Union President Syed Sajjad Akbar Kazmi, Rana Atta Mohammad, Rana Liaquat Ali and Malik Sabir.
Teachers 'should be paid salaries during vacation'
Islamabad: The Islamabad Model Colleges Academic Staff Association has asked the Federal Directorate of Education to pay salaries to the teachers on daily wage during summer vacation, says a press release.
IMCASA President Professor Ijaz Athar, Vice President Professor Hafeezullah and General Secretary Amjad Iqbal said that students of model colleges have to pay fees for the whole academic year, including summer vacation, but daily wage teachers are not paid their salaries during summer holidays.
They said that daily wage teachers are paid salaries from students' fund. Model colleges earn huge money by collecting fees from students even for summer vacation, but daily wage teachers are not paid their salaries during this period.
Media workshop begins at NDU
Rawalpindi: Two-week long National Media Workshop Serial-4 started at National Defence University (NDU), Islamabad, says a press release.
Over seventy participants including eminent journalists, from all over the country along with some parliamentarians and persons from other segments of the society are participating in this workshop. The aim of the workshop is to discuss the importance of media as an element of national power in the pursuit of national interests and also to debate core issues confronting Pakistan.
President National Defence University, Lieutenant General Agha Muhammad Umer Farooq, in his opening address highlighted the importance and scope of the National Media Workshop. He stressed upon the role of media in perception building, shaping attitudes and behaviours, developing ethical values and culture of tolerance in a nation. Pakistani media, he said, is custodian of the culture and a potent source of change, and thus had even greater responsibility in bringing the country out of the current problems it is confronted with. Media he said in Pakistan is the backbone of nationalism, morale and nation building as well as creating, promoting and projecting self-pride. He further added that being responsible to ourselves we should have clear objectives of where we want to take the nation. He opined that nation provided with information but not knowledge may develop a confused psychological mindset. The news