Universities in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa | IIU moot

VCs decide to reopen universities, teachers disagree
Peshawar, Nov 23: The vice-chancellors (VCs) of public sector universities in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa on Monday decided to reopen universities from November 26, but provincial chapter of the Federation of All Pakistan Universities Academic Staff Association (FAPUASA) said they would continue boycott of classes until recovery of Islamia College University Vice-Chancellor Ajmal Khan.

The meeting was chaired by University of Peshawar (UoP) VC Azmat Hayat and attended by office-bearers of the FAPUASA and VCs, including VC of University of Engineering and Technology Imtiaz Hussain Gilani, acting VC of Agriculture University Dr Naeem, VC of Malakand University Rasool Jan, VC of Abdul Wali Khan University, Mardan, Ihsan Ali, VC of Khyber Medical University Dr Muhammad Hafizullah, VC of Women University Peshawar Ms Farhana Jahangir, FAPUASA president Dr Fida Mohammad and other office-bearers of the association.

Mr Ajmal Khan was kidnapped allegedly by Taliban militants in September along with his driver. Later, the militants warned to kill him by November 20 if their demands were not accepted by the government.

This sparked protests by the students association and teachers who held demonstrations to press the government to speed up efforts for release of the kidnapped VC.

Talking to reporters, UoP VC Azmat Hayat said that all universities would open from November 26.

"This decision has been taken in the best interest of the students and on repeated requests of the parents," he said.

Mr Hayat said that all-out efforts would be made for the safe recovery of Ajmal Khan. He said that the VCs were satisfied with the efforts so far made by the government for the recovery of the ICU VC.

However, the representative body of teachers, FAPUASA, announced that it would continue their strike till recovery of the ICU VC.

Talking to this correspondent, FAPUASA KP chapter president Dr Fida said that they were present at the VCs' meeting and presented their point of view.

"Here we have parted ways with the VCs. We will continue boycott of classes till the recovery of Ajmal Khan," he said.

Dr Fida said that the teachers were fighting for the rights of VCs, but they had deviated from their principled stance. He also criticised Governor Owais Ahmed Ghani, who the chancellor of public sector universities, for ignoring the VC's abduction and the subsequent strikes by teachers. "The governor has taken the whole episode lightly, as he never bothered to hold a meeting with the teachers and brief them about the government's efforts for the recovery of Ajmal Khan," he said. Dawn

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IIU to hold moot on women's universities
Islamabad: To explore the potential of women's universities to bolster and strengthen females, the International Islamic University (IIU) will organise a two-day International Interdisciplinary Conference on 'Women's Universities as Agents of Change' here on Friday (November 26).

Federal Minister for Information Qamar-uz-Zaman Kaira will be the chief guest and IIU Rector Professor Fateh Muhammad Malik shall preside over the ceremony, while IIU President Dr. Anwar Hussain Siddiqui will inaugurate the ceremony.

The multidisciplinary conference seeks to analyse the role of such institutions to strengthen women, a segment of society that has traditionally been marginalised. In view of an increasing realisation of the indispensable role of education in the promotion of meaningful social change, the conference will try to bring together researchers to discuss how women's universities can serve as a centre-stage and launching pad for a programme to interrogate and redress gender inequality, to reduce the gender gap, to formulate a pedagogy which instills critical selfhood and consciousness in women and to promote higher education and skill development in women.

Some of the major themes in the conference include 'Women's Universities: Women's Education, Female Empowerment and Social Change', 'Professional Development of Women', 'Gender Roles and Cultural Forms: Media and Literary Representation of Women' and "Islam and Women's Empowerment".

The conference will bring together a group of 42 international as well as national speakers on a wide range of themes dealing with pedagogical, sociological, psychological, religious, literary and cultural issues related to women's education, gender studies and female empowerment.

There are five key-note speakers from different parts of the world, including Dr. Maria Jaschok from the University of Oxford, U.K.; Dr. Sylvia Maier from the University of New York, USA; Dr. Nor Faridah Abdul Manaf from the International Islamic University, Malaysia; and Dr. Anees Ahmad (Riphah International University) and Dr. Shahid Siddiqui (Lahore School of Economics) from Pakistan. In addition, 37 speakers from Malaysia, England and all over Pakistan will be presenting their papers.

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Varsity asked to produce record of Rahimdad's degree
Peshawar: An election tribunal of the Peshawar High Court (PHC) Monday ordered the administration of the Gomal University, Dera Ismail Khan, to submit record of graduation degree of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Senior Minister Rahimdad Khan within a week.

The tribunal presided over by Justice Mazhar Alam Miankhel was told by the administration of the varsity that the degree of the senior minister had been sent to the Higher Education Commission for verification.

The tribunal was taking up two identical election petitions filed by losing candidates from PF-27 (Mardan-V) Shahid Khan and Riaz Khan who had accused the minister of producing a fake bachelor's degree before the Election Commission of Pakistan to contest the general election. The petitioners requested the tribunal that the election of Rahimdad Khan might be set aside and the authorities concerned be directed to take appropriate legal action against him.

Both the petitioners recently moved an application in the main petition, praying the court to direct the respondent to submit the record of the HEC-verified degree and then forward it to the Election Commission. The tribunal also directed superintendent of the degree cell of the Gomal University, Naseer Khan, to appear before the court on the next hearing to record his statement in the case.

During previous hearing, the in-charge of degree cell of the Gomal University had told the tribunal that the provincial senior minister's degree was available in the university record, but he didn't issue it.

In-charge of degree cell of the university, Hafeezullah Khattak during cross-examination said the degree of Rahimdad Khan was not put before him for signature despite the fact that he had been signing the degrees since 1995.

When Rahimdad's counsel Abdul Lateef Yousafzai questioned him about issuance of original degree to the minister by the varsity, he simply said that the degree was not sent to him for signature. The official admitted before the court that he was suspended for six months from the post but he denied that he was suspended on charges of bungling in degrees record.

The senior minister's counsel produced slip of urgent fee of Rs2,000 that was deposited for issuance of the degree from the university. On the court's directives Hafeezullah Khattak produced the record of the degrees issued by the varsity.

During another hearing, Hafeezullah Khattak had showed ignorance about issuance of BA original degree to Rahimdad Khan when his lawyer produced the documents before him for verification.

He said that signatures of vice-chancellor and controller of examination were genuine, but he did not know who had issued the degree. The two statements of Hafeezullah were found contradictory during cross-examination by Rahimdad Khan's lawyer. The news

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Dir varsity sub-campus to be set up in Chitral
Chitral: The vice-chancellor of Shaheed Benazir Bhutto University, Upper Dir Professor Dr Jahandar Shah has said Chitral will become a sub-campus of the university as and when suitable building is made available to it.

Speaking at a meeting at the dealing office of the university here on Monday, he said that owing to the growing strength of the students and high literacy rate in the area, the establishment of a university campus in Chitral was the need of the hour, which will subsequently be developed into a full-fledged university in near future.

Mr Shah said for want of a building, the sub-campus could not be started during the current academic year in Chitral. He said the university campus would be named after the highest peak of the Hindu Kush range, Terich Mir.

Mr Shah said the dealing office of the university provided the students with maximum possible facilities so that they could be saved from travelling to Sheringal valley of Upper Dir. He said that he would be available to the people of Chitral round the clock on his personal telephone numbers to hear and redress their grievances.

Speaking on the occasion, the controller of examinations of the university, Prof Mohammad Rose Khan said the dealing office was established to give a meaningful representation to the people of Chitral.

The principal of government postgraduate college Prof Karimullah, principal of government management sciences college Sahibuddin and representatives of civil society highlighted the problems relating to higher education specially conduct of

examinations. Dawn

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