24 colleges in Sindh await permanent staff

KARACHI, May 3(Dawn): Two dozen colleges in the province, including 11 in Karachi, have been working for the last three years without the approval of SNE (schedule for new expenditures).

According to the government rules and regulations, no teaching or non-teaching staff could be recruited without prior approval of the SNE.

Due to unavailability of permanent staff, these colleges, including eight for boys and 16 for girls, are being run by staff borrowed on posting or assignment from other colleges who work on part-time basis. As a result, academic activities in these colleges depended on availability of these ad-hoc teaching staff and thousands of college students have to bear the brunt when their course is not covered during the academic year.

Of these 24 colleges, four boys and seven girls colleges are located in Karachi. They are Government Boys College, Baldia; Government Boys College, Quaidabad; Government Boys College, Gulistan-i-Jauhar (morning and evening shifts); Government Girls College, Gulistan-i-Jauhar; Government Girls College, Mehmoodabad; Government Girls College Metroville, SITE; Government Girls College, Orangi Town Sector 7C; Government Girls College, Dawood Chowrangi; Government Girls College, Landhi-3; Government Girls College, Korangi-2.

Ten such colleges, including three for boys and seven for girls, are located in Hyderabad region while three colleges -- one for boys and two for girls - with lack of permanent teaching staff are located in Khairpur and Kambar districts.

The Sindh Professors and Lecturers Association on Wednesday expressed serious concern over the government apathy to approve SNEs for these colleges.

In a high-level meeting, presided over by SPLA President Prof Syed Riaz Ahsan, the issue was discussed in detail. The meeting, which was attended among others by Prof Liaquat Aziz, Prof Manzoor Chishti, Prof Agha Khalid, Prof Ayub Mari, Prof Athar Hussain Mirza, Prof Shafqat Jokhio, Prof Gazanfar Ali Shah and Prof Iftikhar Muhammad Azami, criticized the provincial education minister and secretary for the undue delay in the approval of SNEs.

Prof Syed Riaz Ahsan said 800 to 900 students were enrolled with each of these 24 colleges. Thousands of students, majority of them girls, were suffering due to non-approval of SNE, he said.

He said that the ex-nazim of Karachi, Niamatullah Khan, during his tenure had earmarked Rs100 million a year for the 11 colleges of Karachi. He said from that fund cooperative teachers and non-teaching staff were hired.

The SPLA president said the city government did not release the funds on the plea that colleges were transferred from the city government to the provincial government. He said due to paucity of funds the services of cooperative teachers were now discontinued and these colleges were being run on ad-hoc basis by part-time lecturers borrowed from other colleges. He said the principals of different colleges were running these SNE-less colleges on part-time and ad-hoc basis.

He asked the government to take serious notice of the situation and approve SNE for these colleges at an earliest to save academic years of students.

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