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Two foreign KEMU teachers seek transfer to UHS

LAHORE, Sept 3: Two foreign faculty members of the King Edward Medical University (KEMU) are unwilling to continue what they call for lack of research facilities there to exploit their potential.

In a letter to Higher Education Commission (HEC) Chairman Prof Attaur Rehman obtained, Prof Khan Z. Shirani and Prof Tajuddin Hasan Kirmani have requested him to transfer them to the University of Health Sciences (UHS) so that they could contribute more effectively.

Both foreign nationals had been hired under the HEC Foreign Faculty Hiring Programme.

Mr Shirani, Prof of Surgery in KEMU\Mayo Hospital, says in his letter: "To my assessment, the work environment, including research facilities, equipment and support structure in place at the KEMU is inhospitable, if not out-rightly hostile, to education and research due to onerous and illogical controls, vestiges of industrial era and most undesirable for today's information age and services-based intellectual economy."

"In order to be productive to my potential I need a change of environment, realizing though it would rather be preposterous on my part owing to my limited exposure and experience in this country to assume that an ideal research facility does not exist."

"During my recent visit to the Health Sciences Center (HSC), Lahore, I found the teaching and learning environment there to be conducive to research work. Had I been assigned to the HSC I believe I would have been more useful in advancing the HEC agenda of improving the standards of postgraduate medical education in Pakistan"

British national Tajuddin Hasan Kirmani, Prof\advisor, faculty of Allied Health Sciences and project director of KEMU's Department of Nursing and Paramedics, says in his letter: "I have found that the work environment, including physical facilities and support structure at the KEMU is not conducive to any meaningful nursing education or research."

"I believe had I been assigned to the UHS, Lahore, I would be more productive in my efforts to increase the depth and breadth of existing nursing education." Prof Kirmani has requested the HEC chairman to transfer his services to the UHS.

A KEMU spokesman said that the foreign faculty teachers were not taking interest in teaching assignments and their focus was only on research.

He said when the vice-chancellor took stock of the situation and 'pressed' them that their center of attention should be on teaching they started complaining about such things.

A foreign faculty member under the HEC programme was receiving over Rs200,000 salary per month and a local professor was getting Rs50,000, he said. Dawn
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