Strict security at HSC exam†centres
Karachi, May 08: The Higher Secondary School Certificate (HSC) annual examination 2012 began amid security at almost all the examination centres on Monday, while the candidates and examination staffs largely complained of the absence of electricity for a substantial period of time.
According to Board of Intermediate Education Karachi (BIEK) sources, about 43,000 candidates of the faculties of Science and Home Economics peacefully appeared for and took the first year papers of Islamic Education/Civics/Akhlaqiat from 9.30am to 11.30am on Monday, the first day of the first phase of the HSC annual examination.
However, there were reports of interference from outsiders at Adamjee Government Science College, Business Recorder Road.
When contacted, a senior teacher said that over 20 outsiders had managed to enter the examination centre in the morning before the deployment of police there. The Police, however, reached as soon as the issue was brought to its knowledge and helped the examination staff in getting rid of the outsiders during the early hours of the examination.
Police was moved at once in the case of Adamjee College, the BIEK examination controller, M. Imran Khan Chisti, said, adding that the incident was not related to the conducting of the examination.
Centre superintendents of Sirajuddaula Government College, Liaquat Government College, Malir, Government Superior Science College, Shah Faisal Colony, Government Degree Science/Commerce College, Landhi/Korangi, mentioned that there was adequate deployment of police at the centres.
However, they complained about the scarcity of electricity due to load shedding and feared that the situation might get even more out of control in the absence of KESC supply or generators in the days to come.
The duration of papers held on Monday was of two hours, but the remaining papers will be of three-hour duration and as such students could protest over the non-availability of electricity and other amenities at the examination centres in the wake of hot and humid weather.
In the meantime, a handout from the Karachi commissioner's office stated that the KESC had been asked to ensure uninterrupted supply of electricity at both the morning and evening shifts for all the examination centres in the city.
Commissioner Roshan Ali Shaikh, who personally paid a visit to a couple of the HSC examination centres, told the chairman of the BIEK that he should make sure that potable water and fans were provided at all the examination centres so that the students could solve their papers comfortably.
According to a BIEK press release, in all 11 candidates were found resorting to unfair means during the examination on Monday. Their cases had been sent to the unfair means committee of BIEK for action in line with the board's rules.
Load shedding was also a concern of the board, as according to it, the students had to face enormous trouble in taking their examination due to interruption in the power supply.
In the meantime, the BIEK placed the key of the objective questions given in the Monday's examination on its website one hour after the conclusion of the examinations so that the candidates could assess their standings in the objective portions of the examination the same day.
BIEK will hold the examinations in two shifts from Tuesday onwards and as such the candidates would have to bear the brunt of power failure. Moreover, KESC should do away with load shedding during the night hours in order to enable the candidates to concentrate and make full preparations for their examinations in the hours preceding the exam day.
Students adopt unfair means in†exams
Hyderabad: Use of unfair means in ongoing Higher Secondary School examinations have reached a point where invigilators and teachers are too scared to stop it because of looming life threats.
The final examinations of Class XI and XII began on Monday amid cheating and copying and taking help through cell phones despite imposition of Section 144 around the centres. This bellied the oft repeated claims of divisional commissioner and Hyderabad Board of Intermediate and Secondary Education authorities.
Terrified invigilating staffers were could not take action because of a backlash from students, and police unable to keep photocopier shops closed during examination hours.
This correspondent found two students solving their papers while sitting on a single bench due to shortage of furniture while youths in possession of solved papers and answer sheets of Urdu paper-I were roaming freely inside the Government Degree College Latifabad Unit-II.
A young boy on confrontation bravely said that he was taking the solved paper to give it to his brother who was appearing in the examinations. The paper was solved by a coaching centre teacher and neither police nor the centre's staff stopped him from entering the examination centre.
The two policemen posted at there were least bothered to check the entry of unconcerned people rather one of them from A-Section Police Station Latifabad said their duty was to intervene if the situation becomes of law and order.
Students were solving the papers in sweltering heat amid load-shedding and invigilators not at all bothered to stop them from using unfair means. Students were found brazenly cheating, copying and taking help through cell phones and guides.
Asst Prof Naeem appointed by the BISE expressed his inability to enforce strict discipline because of safety and security concerns of self and other invigilators.
He admitted to this correspondent that forceful recovery of mobile phones from students would cost invigilators a hell lot once they were out of the examination centres since majority of students were unruly.
Principal, Government College Kohsar, Prof Adil Hayat complained of acute shortage of benches. The BISE authorities were informed of the shortage of benches and were even told that the college staff would be forced to share one bench with two students thus helping in copy culture but of no use, he said.
An invigilator Shahida Parveen Abro posted at the Government Zubeda Girls College embarrassed girl candidates by conducting their body search in the presence of male colleagues. However, she recovered cheating material from some of the girls.
Chairman BISE, Abdul Aleem Khanzada said the team can search any girl on suspicion but not in the presence of males.
He said 46 cases of cheating were caught and three invigilators disqualified for failing to check unfair means.
PA passes teachers development authority†bill
Karachi: The Sindh Assembly on Monday passed into law the Sindh Teachers Education Development Authority Bill, 2012 for training, educational development and enhancement of the professional capacities of teachers.
Senior Education Minister Pir Mazharul Haq, who piloted the bill out of turn after dispensing with Rule 84, 85 and 86, said that in future only professional teachers having registration licences could be recruited as teachers in public and private institutions and would be given grade 16 instead of the present grade 9.
He said Sindh University and Shah Latif University were authorised to give affiliation to teachers' training institutes.
He said in the absence of any apex authority private sector institutes were awarding certificates for amounts ranging from Rs2,000 to Rs20,000.
He said the USAID with its $75 million grant to the government had initiated a pilot project to provide training to trainers of teachers. Under the pilot project, 50 teachers each were being trained in two shifts in the women teaching training college in Karachi and Hyderabad by education experts from Michigan University.
Pir Mazhar said it was for the first time that the government instead of preparing the law itself had involved eminent educationists such as Dr Prof Abdul Wahab, Dr R. A. Shah, Dr Mazhar Siddiqui, Prof Usman Ali Essani, Anwar Ahmad Zai, Murad Ahmad Nizamani, Dr Suleman Shaikh and Sadiqa Salahuddin.
He said the bill was the outcome of their efforts and hoped that with the enactment of the law, a sound foundation would be laid to produce professional and committed teachers.
He said the government had appointed schoolteachers on merit with the funding of the World Bank and 19,000 more teachers would be appointed this year.
He also informed the house that out of the 7,000 closed schools, 3,000 institutions had been made functional and the remaining would soon be opened.
Parliamentary party leader of the Muttahida Qaumi Movement Syed Sardar Ahmad said that deterioration in the education sector was not because of politics but flaws of politicians for ignoring the competence and merit culture.
Information Minister Shazia Marri recalled reasons for the falling standard in the education sector and held responsible the "boots and courts" for ruining the country's education system.
Muhammad Anwar Mahar said that despite drawing high salary of up to
Rs60,000 per month the BEd and MEd qualified teachers did not attend
schools or take the classes to teach their students.Humera Alwani said
that new methods were being applied across the globe to train teachers
but in Pakistan it appeared that teachers were stuck to old traditions
teaching. She was also critical of inducting subject teachers into the administrative side.
Dr Ahmad Ali Shah said that the condition in the education sector was extremely poor and if the bill was introduced earlier, the situation could have improved.
Sherjeel Memon said that it was a good step for laying a strong base of education for coming generations.
Khalid Ahmad said the bill would be a leap forward to bring about a revolution in the education sector.
Khwaja Izharul Hasan, Rafique Engineer, Sassui Palejo, Dr Sikander Shoro, Kulsoom Chandio and Syed Bachal Shah also supported the bill.
During the clause-by-clause reading, two amendments, suggested by the MQM's Khalid Ahmed, were incorporated in the bill.
Through the first amendment, the speaker would nominate three lawmakers, including the chairman of the assembly's standing committee on education, on the managing board of the authority, while through the second amendment the secretary of the education department would be one of the official members and not its vice chairman as mentioned in the bill.
After the bill was passed into law, Speaker Nisar Ahmad Khuhro stressed the need for changing mindset.
Before Speaker Khuhro called it a day at 3.20pm, PPP lawmaker Taimour Talpur stood on a point of order and informed the house that although the water situation was normal, in his constituency there was an acute water shortage due to mismanagement in water distribution.
Mr Talpur said he had no other demand from the government than water supply for cultivation before the sowing season was over.
He said he did not like to move any privilege motion as he had become tired of raising the issue with no outcome. He suggested an inquiry into his complaint and said its report should be submitted to the assembly.
Sassui Palejo also drew the attention of the house towards the water shortage in Umerkot, Badin and Thatta.
Speaker Khuhro said the irrigation minister had promised to give a briefing to the house but he somehow could not do so. He said he would again ask the minister to hear members complaints about water.
The speaker also announced that the governor had given assent to the Indus University Bill, 2011.
Earlier, when Deputy Speaker Shehla Raza wanted to discuss the law
and order situation, Shoaib Bokhari suggested that in the absence of the
chief minister, who holds the portfolio of home ministry, and the law
minister it was not appropriate to start general discussion on law and
order as no one was there to respond to questions to be raised during
The chair after consultation with Pir Mazhad deferred the discussion for Tuesday, which would be taken up after the adjournment motion. Dawn