FBISE illegal housing scheme

FBISE continues with 'illegal' housing scheme
Islamabad, Nov 08: Interesting revelations have surfaced in the Federal Board of Intermediate and Secondary Education's deal for purchasing illegal land worth Rs750 million as a committee constituted by its board of governors that approved the fishy scheme was first replaced by 'queen's men' of which one wrote strong dissenting note but the committee continued with the project.

The high-ups of the FBISE have initiated a private housing scheme worth Rs750 million. The housing scheme from whom the FBISE is purchasing the land has also been declared illegal by the Capital Development Authority.

Chairperson FBISE Shaheen Khan who is enjoying two important posts simultaneously in the capital, being head of FBISE and Director General Federal Directorate of Education and became centre of news last days when Higher Education Commission declared her PhD degree as fake.

She has initiated a housing project out of the funds of FBISE and also got approval of the board of governors, which is being headed by her. The documents of the board of governors' proceedings and the committees constituted by it reveal that first a nine-member committee was constituted to look into the matter and to finalise land for purchase.

A year after, most of the members of that committee were not called in the meeting of which one wrote a strong note to the chairperson FBISE.

Hameedullah Khan, the manager FBISE, who wrote a note to the chairperson FBISE confirmed that first he and other officers were made the members of a committee but latter were not called in the meeting. "When we were not called in the meeting then we all left out," said the officer adding, "When you are in an office and if you feel something against the law you do protest."

He said that he and other members were removed from the committee without any written orders.

The committee was replaced by a negotiation committee and held a meeting on June 10, 2010. During the meeting senior member Shehnaz Perveen objected over the entire process of the housing project of FBISE on the basis of not being given a clear picture. "She again showed her disbelief on all members and desired to go through the site plan of all the societies visited so far or otherwise she can not become part of this committee to take any decision in this regard." When the committee members did not pay heed to Shehnaz Parveen's objection, she opted to leave the committee.

Sources in the FBISE say that no necessary legal procedure has been adopted by the FBISE chairperson for the launch of housing society for the employees. "No tenders have been issued and the location for the society has been selected merely on the basis of favouritism," the source added.

Sources privy to the developments disclosed that an amount of Rs261.787 million has already been released for the Federal Employees Cooperative Housing Society, Islamabad, on the pretext of purchase of plots in Jinnah Gardens, Phase 1 with Rs140.96 million through DD No. 3717716 dated 30-06-2010 which was released on 02-07-2010 while two cheques bearing nos. 03242801 dated 20-07-2010 and 03242803 dated 21-07-2010 of worth Rs60.412 million each from Allied Bank Limited, Super Market Branch, Islamabad.

Moreover, the Capital Development Authority (CDA) has published a public notice in national newspapers on August 8, 2010 (copy available) in which a warning has been issued regarding sale and purchase in Jinnah Gardens. According to the notice, CDA warned that the layout plan of the housing society has not been approved yet and any kind of sale or purchase in the society would be illegal.

It also warned the management of the Federal Employees Corporative Housing Society not to start any kind of development activity until NOC is issued to them.

When contacted, Chairperson FBISE and FDE Director General Shaheen Khan said that the case of housing scheme was in the Supreme Court and she was hopeful that she will win it. When asked about the change of committees, Shaheen Khan said that the BoG has given the approval of the project and all those people who were disseminating these news will loose the case in the court.

When asked about the dissenting note of Shehnaz Parveen, the chairperson FBISE said that if Shahenaz had written a dissenting note then she was not the whole committee. "The committee approved the scheme on majority vote," said Shaheen Khan. She said that FBISE should be praised for launching such housing project for its employees.

When asked that the CDA has banned sale and purchase of land being purchased from the national kitty by FBISE, Shaheen Khan replied, "This does not matter us because CDA has declared many other housing schemes as illegal as well but people are living there and land is being sold and purchased, what the CDA has done?"

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AIOU increases study period of enrolled students
Islamabad: As per directive of the Vice Chancellor Allama Iqbal Open University (AIOU) Prof. Dr. Nazir A. Sangi, university increased study period of students by decreasing the mailing process.

A press release issued here on Sunday said that the process of mailing of books to the students from materic to PhD level across the country is continued rapidly and the admission of BEd programme has been finalized before the time.

The books of BEd programmes for the Semester Autumn, 2010 have been sent to the students at their given addresses, this was announced by Sohail Nazir Rana, Director Admissions of the university.

He said if any student has not received books so far should check admission at website www.aiou.edu.pk of the university.

In case of no admission at website, the students advised to write an application with photo copy of the paid fee in the name of Director Admissions, AIOU up to November 20 so that to ensure admission in the ongoing semester.

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AIOU to extend educational services to rural areas
Islamabad: Allama Iqbal Open University (AIOU) has been rated one of the four mega universities of the world in terms of highest enrolment of students. It has more than one million students across the country and in the Middle East catering for their diverse educational needs ranging from basic literacy to the PhD level.

AIOU Vice Chancellor Professor Dr. Nazir A. Sangi has chalked out a comprehensive plan to extend the AIOU's educational facilities to rural areas of the country by using technology, such as video-conferencing, FM radio, TV broadcast, MMS, SMS facilities, etc.

The state-of-the-art Wi-Fi Mesh network system recently installed has enhanced communication and coordination among regional offices of AIOU, faculty members, tutors, students and researchers. Wi-Fi Mesh network connectivity is being used for web browsing, email, access to e-library and others educational resources. Wi-Fi Mesh network system facilitates students and teachers through video-conferencing in workshops.

AIOU has also started using SMS service being provided by the Pakistan Telecommunication Authority to get faster connectivity with its students, tutors and course coordinators. As a result of coordinated efforts of the university, Educational Broadcast Forum has been established which provides a platform for sharing knowledge and experiences of universities in the country having FM radio facilities.

Model study centres and regional offices are being established in the rural areas. The vision is not only to enhance the educational capability of the rural people but also to develop personality and character building. Besides, the university is planning to chalk out professional and technical training programmes well-matched to the requirements of the rural populace.

The university has also taken initiatives on priority basis for the training of women teachers and lady health workers in Balochistan, as mortality rate is too high in the rural areas of the province. The university is endeavouring to open new avenues in Balochistan to bring its people in the mainstream by providing them technical, professional and higher education.

Dr. Nazir A. Sangi believes that employees are the backbone of the organisation. He views that organizations can only flourish and achieve set objectives when their employees are satisfied mentally and financially. In this regard, the present university's administration is working hard to timely promote its employees and to create a better working environment for them. The university is also planning many new projects for the welfare of its employees, which will soon be materialised.

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Abduction from school exposes security
The kidnapping of a female student from a premier missionary school has exposed poor security arrangements besides lack of monitoring especially in the wake of prevailing threat of terrorism.

The unfortunate incident has highlighted lack rather absence of monitoring on part of government which is responsible to ensure that private as well as government institutions especially schools follow strict security measures in prevailing law and order situation.

The provincial government had issued special guidelines to educational institutions after terrorist attack at the International Islamic University (IIU), Islamabad, last year. Nonetheless the government is also responsible to ensure implementation of its guidelines which, it seems, the government has failed.

One wonders as to how there was security lapse at top missionary institution of the provincial metropolis, Convent of Jesus and Mary, on November 4 when a recreational ceremony, Meena Bazaar, was organised on the school campus while the threat of terrorism, unfortunately, has always been existing in the prevailing circumstances.

Another perturbing point, as reported, is students were asked to reach for Meena Bazaar at around 7am while the CCTV cameras were switched on at 8am. The event ended at 2pm while the CCTV cameras were switched off at 11:30am.

The fact which highlights sheer failure of Convent of Jesus & Mary's management is that Faryal Talat, 13, a student of class eight, was kidnapped from a school where entry in normal circumstances is very restricted and unknown persons are not allowed entry.

According to father of the kidnapped student, Talat Mehmood, he used to pick and drop his daughter himself. This also highlights extreme negligence on part of the school security guards as to how they let the student leave the school without her father.

It is pertinent to mention here that the Racecourse police registered a case No 680/10 under section 496/A against unknown kidnappers on Nov 4, the day of the incident. However, so far no progress has been made in connection with recovery of the girl student.

The agony and pain of the family members of the kidnapped student certainly demand immediate and firm action by those at the helm. Besides those responsible for security lapse should also be taken to task.

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CIIT convocation to be held on 10th
Islamabad: The 31st convocation ceremony of COMSATS Institute of Information Technology (CIIT) Islamabad campus will held on Wednesday at 1 p.m. at Jinnah Convention Centre Islamabad, says a press release More then 600 students will receive their degrees in different disciplines. On the occasion, chancellor's and institute medals will be awarded to students from all campuses of CIIT and campus medals will be awarded to position holding students of Islamabad campus.

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E-learning programme
Islamabad: Ministry of Narcotics Control (MoNC) in collaboration with United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) would launch e-learning programme in Anti Narcotics Force (ANF) Academy and other training institutes of Law Enforcement Agencies (LEAs) of the country.

UNODC will support ministry of Narcotics to launch the programme, said an official of Ministry of Narcotics Control here on Saturday.

He informed main objective the project is to formulate computer based curriculum of e-learning according to Pakistan's needs for training institutions particularly ANF Academy, FIA Academy and National Police Academy. "Computer based training would enhance the performance of these institutions", he said.

He informed that ANF academy will start functioning later this year and would be designed to be a centre of excellence and its first model course would start in couple of months.

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Roots Sports for Peace Extravaganza held
Rawalpindi: Roots School System, DHA Phase-II Campus, held its 'Annual Roots Sports for Peace Extravaganza 2010' here on Saturday.

The function was meticulously organised and flawlessly choreographed while all the presentations were depicting creative and innovative thoughts in support of young peacemakers' campaign towards creating a peaceful environment through education.

Former world squash champion Jansher Khan was the chief guest while Deputy Head of Mission, Embassy of United Arab Emirates Matter al Sadhal al Mansoori was the guest of honour on the occasion. Mushtaq Rasul Chaudhry CEO RSS, Riffat Mushtaq Founder Director RSS, directors Faisal Mushtaq, Khadija Omair and Walid Mushtaq were also present on the occasion.

The whole sports ground was transformed into make belief virtual peaceful environment. The students were carrying banners on which it was written 'freedom from desire leads to inner peace', 'a smile is the beginning of peace', 'whenever you are sincerely pleased, you are nourished' etc.

Over 600 parents and guests were excited to see young children perform in front of them confidently and creative themes and presentations were demonstrated with poise. The students amazed the audience with their vibrant costumes enthralling songs, exquisite decor and aesthetics.

Chief guest Jansher Khan appreciated the efforts of the young Rootsians and teachers in devising developmental and creative approach in school curriculum and in children. The guests attended the two and half hour ceremony with patience and constantly applauded the young children on the brilliant performances.

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Colourful convocation at Gandhara school
Islamabad: A grand convocation ceremony was held at Gandhara Public School, Islamabad, says a press release.

The Gandhara Public School staff and students of the Advanced Montessori Class made it a colourful, meaningful and a memorable occasion. Saima Ammar, Founder of Pakistan Foundation For Blind (PFFB) Audio World, a talking book library for the blind was the chief guest.

Gandhara Public School Principal Zermina Shakeel spoke about the unique features of early education at the school. She also presented a brief report on her recent trip to The principal congratulated the young graduates on completion of 3 years of early education at Gandhara Public School and wished them success and happiness as they continue on the path of learning and exploration.

The graduating class received their certificates dressed in fabulous gowns. Before distributing certificates to the students of Advanced Montessori, classes of Junior, Senior and Advanced Montessori and Class I impressed the guests with colourful and interesting skits, poems and tableau. The news

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