Fee hike at DHA school, college condemned

Parents condemn hike in DHA school, college fees
Lahore: After the Defence public schools and Defence degree colleges announced an increase of 40 percent in student fees, parents condemned the decision and termed it an unjustified economic burden on them.

The parents said the fees had been raised at a time when they were already bearing the brunt of record inflation in the country. The students of the Defence Degree College for Boys, the Defence Degree College for Girls, the Defence Junior School, the Defence Senior Campus and the Defence Kindergarton have been affected by the increase in fees.

As per a notification that had been issued by the school principal to parents recently, and a copy of which is available with Daily Times, the Defence Housing Authority (DHA) administration increased its tuition fees by Rs 1,000 from the KG level to college level, and Rs 1,200 for O Level students.

The Defence Public School (DPS ) administration charges its fee on the quarterly (three-month) basis. A paid fee challan form of the grade second students issued before three month, dated 02-06-2010 shows a total fee of Rs 8,505 with Rs 7,500 tuition fee. However, the recently issued fee challan form of the same student for the third quarter of this year dated 01-10-201, shows a total fee of Rs 11,505 with 10,500 tuition fee. This showed a quarterly increase of Rs 3,000 that had been made by the administration. Father of a student, who requested not to be named, said his business had been in a slump and he was unable to afford "such unwanted illegal raises in the fees".

A letter issued to the parents of the students, by the DPS principal states, "Due to the high inflationary situation in the country, the management of the DHA has decided to revise the fee structure… which is quite affordable and reasonable." A few students' parents gathered outside the school building in the DHA Phase 3, Sector Z, and said that they had been planning to contact the "media for this... injustice", sources said. Daily times

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Teachers still in protest mode
Lahore: Universities and college teachers and students are still in a protest mode.

The varsities claim that the federal government has failed to release required grants, while the college teachers and students demand that the Punjab government should de-notify boards of governors constituted in 26 colleges.

Federation of All Pakistan Universities Academic Staff Association (FAPUASA) President Prof Dr Mahr Saeed Akhtar says the federal government has notified the release of only little over Rs1 billion that could not serve the purpose of universities across the country.

He said the federation had held a meeting and informed the HEC that the universities required at least Rs15 billion to operate smoothly.

Meanwhile, college teachers and students continued their protest against the constitution of boards of governors.

The Joint Action Committee made a human chain in front of the Punjab Assembly. Dawn

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Higher education secretary's appointment challenged in LHC
Lahore: Justice Sheikh Azmat Saeed of the Lahore High Court on Wednesday issued a notice to the Punjab government on a petition challenging appointment of Ahmad Khan Cheema as secretary higher education.

Saeed directed the provincial government to file a reply by November 8. He issued the directions on a petition of a citizen Mujtaba Shahbaz. Petitioner's counsel AD Naseem submitted that Cheema was a DMG officer in BPS-19 and had been working as additional secretary welfare. He said the chief secretary had, through a notification issued on September 12, made him secretary higher education department, which was a BPS-20 post.

He asserted that an officer of lower grade could be transferred to a higher post only on a temporary basis if a competent officer is not available. Naseem submitted that many officers in BPS-20 and higher grade had been waiting for postings and transfer but instead officers of lower grades were being posted to higher posts on political considerations. He said the Supreme Court had held that such postings were against the interest of public service and go against fair policy. He requested the court to nullify the notification issued by the chief secretary and restrain the respondent from working as secretary higher education department. Daily times

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'Governor must consult CM on VCs'
Lahore: A division bench of the Lahore High Court disposed of a case pertaining to powers of the governor as chancellor and ruled that he was bound to seek advice from the chief minister on appointment of vice-chancellors of universities.

The bench, headed by Justice Iqbal Hameedur Rehman, also set aside extension granted to vice-chancellor of the Government College University, Faisalabad, and vacated a stay order earlier issued in this regard.

The government, through the higher education department, had taken the plea that the governor was constitutionally bound to seek advice from the chief minister before making appointments.

In the instant case, the government advertised the posts of vice-chancellors of three universities and all three VCs moved the court and got stay orders. The VCs of the University of Engineering and Technology, Taxila, and Islamia University Bahawalpur were given extension by the governor without seeking advice from the chief minister. The GCU Faisalabad VC was appointed for a specific period after the regular VC quit. However, the VCs of UET and IUB were replaced in the process.

As the higher education department has completed selection process for the post of GCU Faisalabad vice-chancellor, it is moving a summary of a panel of three top candidates to the chief minister for advice to the governor/chancellor for appointment of a regular vice-chancellor.

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Over 1,600 teachers await regularisation
Taxila: As the world observed teachers' day on Tuesday, the fate of over 1,600 contractual educators, mostly females, working in the federal government educational institutions (cantonment and garrison) hanged in the balance.

Talking to this correspondent here, some of the teachers said they had been working in the schools for the last over 25 years and still waited for regularisation of their services.

They said on a petition, the Lahore High Court's Rawalpindi bench had directed the authorities concerned to regularise the services of the teachers.

An official of the FGEI directorate had informed the court that the case of the petitioners, including job regularisation, age relaxation and creation of posts, had been submitted to the prime minister through a summary for approval. However, despite the passage of about seven months, the teachers were still waiting for the final nod of the prime minister.

"We have been told that those having experience of less than 10 years will have to appear in tests and interviews for getting permanent status. This is beyond our understanding as we had already appeared in tests and interviews before getting the contractual jobs," said one of the teachers.

According to the female teachers, they could be sent home whenever the administration so desired because they did not have any job protection. They said that in violation of rules and ethics, they were only being given 10 days maternity leave and that too without salary. They said they were getting a lump-sum salary of Rs5,000 per month which was even below the minimum wage of an ordinary laborer fixed by the government.

Another teacher said they were not paid salaries during summer vacation which put extra financial burden on them.

They appealed to the prime minister to approve the summary and order regularisation of their services without any further delay. Dawn

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LUMS, Australian varsity sign MoU
Lahore: A memorandum of understanding (MoU) was signed between the Lahore University of Management Sciences (LUMS) and the University of Newcastle, Australia on October 5, 2010 in Newcastle. The agreement calls for research collaboration and student exchanges between the Suleman Dawood School of Business (SDSB) LUMS and the Faculty of Business and Law, University of Newcastle. The memorandum was signed by Vice Chancellor of LUMS Dr Ahmad J Durraniand and the Vice Chancellor and President of the University of Newcastle Dr Nick Saunders. The ceremony was attended by the High Commissioner of Pakistan to Australia Fauzia Nasreen and Dean of SDSB LUMS Dr Arif Nazir Butt. Daily times

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GCU wins debating contest
Lahore: The Government College University's Debating Society has lifted both English and Urdu declamation trophies at the All-Pakistan English and Urdu declamation contests hosted by Aitchison College here on Wednesday.

As many as 26 top institutions from all over the country, including the Punjab University, the Forman Christian College University and the Lahore Grammar School, contested for the trophies.

In English debates, GCU team comprising Ali Zafar and Muhammad Ali Jee Saleemi won the English declamation trophy. Kamran Khan of Military College, Jhelum, earned the best English speaker award, while GCU Debating Society's secretary-general Ali Zafar and Army Burnhall's Amaar Khan bagged the second and third prizes, respectively.

In Urdu debates, GCU's Ali Zafar and Saadul Hasan lifted the declamation trophy. Kinnaird College's Bareeha Kazmi was adjudged the best Urdu speaker, while GCU's Saadul Hasan stood second and University of Engineering and Technology's Muawiz Siddique bagged third position. Dawn

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