Punjab teachers mobility allowance enhancement

Punjab teachers mobility allowance raised
Lahore, Nov 4: The Punjab government has enhanced the mobility allowance from Rs 450 to Rs 900 per month with effect from December 1, 2009 to all such teachers, working in schools or against administrative posts, who are not provided official vehicles.

According to a notification on Tuesday, the revised allowance will be provided to teachers in all districts of the province except nine big cities where conveyance allowance was already admissible.

The Punjab government has also approved the revised rate of charge allowance for head teachers with effect from Dec 12, 2009.

The charge allowance of head teacher (Primary) has been enhanced to Rs 500 per month from existing Rs 250, for head teacher (Elementary) Rs 700 from Rs 350, head teachers (Secondary) Rs 1,200 from Rs 600 and principals Rs 1,500 from Rs 750.

Similarly, the charge allowance for the teachers, working against administrative posts, has also been revised.

According to the notification, the new charge allowance is Rs 1,000 per month for AEO, Rs 1,500 for Deputy DEO, Rs 2,000 for DEO, Rs 3,000 for EDO Education, Rs 5,000 for Divisional Director and Rs 6,000 for DPI.

The Punjab Government Schools Senior Staff Association (PGSSSA) has welcomed the increase in different allowances. The news

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Punjab schools situation after terror attacks
Lahore: Some schools in Lahore and others elsewhere in Punjab have shut down once more after the latest bomb blast in the city, which injured 20. Others had never opened since the end of October, when schools across the country were closed following the attack on the Islamic University in Islamabad. The disruption in the life of students has been dramatic.

Even during the days some schools opened, bomb drills and other similar exercises dominated thoughts. Attendance remained low and rumours of all kinds flew around campuses. Some schools called in security experts to talk to staff. With the talk of bombs and hostage-taking came fear. Accounts of 'incidents' at various schools added to this, even though it has been impossible to separate fiction from reality.

All this adds a new dimension to society. School administrators, teachers and parents ask how they are to cope with the situation and expect children to do the same without creating damaging paranoia. Security guards and cameras outside gates already contribute to this. One of the issues is that there is no way of knowing when things may change. The factors that give rise to extremism are buried deep in society. Already the very nature of society has changed. The toll on people is enormous.

The extent is for the moment probably not fully recognized. But the hesitation to visit markets or parks or restaurants is everywhere. Combined with this we have a lack of hope on other fronts. Little that is positive seems to be happening. This lack of good news affects everyone. The absence of good governance and the lack of law and order adds to a national sense of loss. The question is whether we can find a way back to normalcy and how this will happen. For the moment there are few answers. The news

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GCUF students lock horns with admin over hostel fee
Faisalabad: Scores of Government College University Faisalabad students -- boarders and day scholars on Tuesday boycotted their classes to protest against the administration for "enhancing 200 per cent hostel dues".

The university administration had enhanced hostel dues a couple of weeks ago and the students said they had requested the hall warden and Vice-Chancellor Dr Shahid Mehboob to withdraw the decision, but their voice had gone unheard.

A number of students of many departments gathered on campus, holding placards inscribed with slogans in favour of their demand for withdrawal of the additional charges. They moved around from one department to another to convey their concerns to the authorities.

After taking round of the campus, they staged a sit-in in front of the VC office for three hours and chanted slogans against Dr Mehboob who, they said, was making it difficult for the students to continue their studies.

The boarders said hostel dues per semester had been enhanced from Rs3,250 to Rs9,300 which included Rs2,000 under the head of transport service which the students had been enjoying free of charge.

The protesters took it as an opportunity to air many other grievances; for example, they said former vice-chancellor Dr Arif Ali Zaidi had got a generator installed for the boarders to help them study without disruption during power suspension, which the present administration had been trying to withdraw.

The students said they took up the hostel fee enhancement issue with Hall Warden Sibghatullah and the vice chancellor, but there was no favourable reply from them. They said they had been forced to demonstrate against the higher-ups.

They also cited the example of the University of Agriculture which, they said, had been charging Rs2,250 per semester from the students (for boarding). The GCUF also should follow the same fee structure, they added.

Some students alleged that security guards had locked the classes, prompting them to raise their voice. During protest, they said, the hostel superintendent slapped a Telecom Engineering student for chanting slogans against the officials. This infuriated the students who warned the security officials against intervention.

Meanwhile, the vice chancellor came out of his office after two hours and announced that the administration had accepted their demands. The students, however, kept chanting slogans as they described it "a tricky game by the VC".

The university security officials allegedly manhandled some reporters and stopped them from entering the institute. "None of the reporters should be allowed to enter the university without his permission," the guards quoted the VC as having directed.

The students broke open the university gate lock, enabling the mediamen to enter the institution. The VC offered an apology to the reporters for any inconvenience caused by his subordinates.

Later, the vice chancellor held talks with a 10-member delegation of the students and reportedly agreed on withdrawal of the decision of new fee structure. A notification would be issued shortly, he was quoted as saying.

Vice-chancellor Dr Mehboob, however, said that the university had not withdrawn its decision yet. He said the students had been demanding fee structure like the one at the agri-varsity, adding that the GCUF administration would review it and make a decision soon. He said the university had been facing financial crunch and had enhanced the hostel fee to Rs6,600 per semester, and not Rs9,300, as claimed by the students. As the university had hired hostel buildings, he said, it had to bear huge rental costs. Dawn

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GCU digitized books for blind students
Lahore: The Government College University (GCU) Centre for Special Children (CSC) has digitized curriculum and pleasure-reading books for the varsity's blind students besides printing them in Braille.

According to a press statement issued on Tuesday, it was revealed at the meeting held to the review the performance of the centre and facilities being provided to the special children.

As many as 23 blind students are studying at the university from the Intermediate to Masters classes and their all curriculum-related books have been digitalized. The students can now memorize these books for their examination by listening to them through computer.

"Now they don't need any special help of other students. The GCU CSC has digitalized almost all curriculum books and now they can prepare for their examination just with the help of a computer," said GCU CSC instructor Salman Khalid, who is MA English from GCU and also visually challenged.

The Centre has also started facilitating the GCU blind students in taking their exams. The centre trains them in using the computer with the help of screen reading software, so that they can solve their papers on the computer.

The Centre has recently imported an expensive Braille Embosser which can print any digitalised material in Braille. The centre has about 20 high-tech computers who can easily run heavy screen reading software.

Salman Khalid said that the Centre had also provided the lectures to students in MP3 format after recording them, so that they could listen to them again and again. The centre also has a six volume English to Urdu Braille dictionary for its blind students.

He added the centre had also extended its facilities to the students of other university on special requests, adding all universities of Pakistan should have such centres to enable blind students to lead a normal life.

The GCU blind students termed the centre a blessing, saying that only visually-challenged student could understand its true importance.

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FC College research report
Lahore: The Centre for Public Policy and Governance (CPPG) of FC College University has issued its first policy research report "Rickshaw & Environmental Pollution: Assessing Punjab Government's Rickshaw Policy." A press release said the report focused on two critical issues, to what degree rickshaws were a problem in causing noise pollution in Lahore. The news

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LHC orders to reconstruct Chishtia School
Lahore: Chief Justice of the Lahore High Court (LHC), Justice Khawaja Muhammad Sharif on Monday ordered the Chief Secretary Punjab to reconstruct the building of Chishtia Model High School behind Civil Secretariat. The CJ also sought compliance report in this regard from the Chief Secretary within three months. The CS submitted before the court that 5 rooms of the said school were demolished in order to retrieve the land from illegal occupants. APP

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