KU & handicapped students | Exam cheating practices
KU lacks facilities for handicapped students
Karachi, April 18: An estimated 1.5 million people are visually impaired in
Pakistan, a majority of whom is young, school, college and university
In Pakistan, blind students face numerous troubles when they leave their homes in order to go to educational institutes.
overall infrastructure is not handicap-friendly and people with
disabilities have to face a lot of difficulties, be it on the roads,
buses, in public or private buildings and educational institutes.
at educational institutes like the University of Karachi (KU), which is
attended by more than 40,000 students, the situation for the visually
impaired is deplorable.
Muhammad Asif Nazir,
who is a blind student at the KU Education Department, said that one of
the major problems is lack of availability of audio recording systems.
"There is not a single audio library at the university, which makes it
extremely difficult for students like me," he said.
He further said
that constructing an audio library for the visually impaired would
reduce the dependency on sighted students, who record lectures at the
moment to assist their visually handicapped comrades.
said, "Forming a blind students union or organisation could help them
voice their issues and concerns in front of the university
Discussing the admission process, Nazir said that
there are no provisions for handicapped students, and it makes the whole
process very cumbersome.
The university announces the admission
dates for the handicapped at the end of the whole process, however, this
year the admissions were announced a month after the regular classes
Nazir was of the view that he did not experience a single
facility by KU so far for the disabled except fees exemption for
He claimed, "Earlier, fees exemption facility for
sightless was also available in MPhil and PhD programmes, but this year
the university stopped giving the waiver."
There are no reserved
seats for the disabled students in university buses, and in some
departments, there are no handrails with the staircases even, the
perturbed student informed DT.
Zafar Ahmed, another visually impaired
student at KU Education Department, commented that apart from the
infrastructure problems, some teachers discourage disabled students by
saying, what is the need to study for the blind?
Ahmed said that
there is no concept of Braille books in KU. "Every blind student has his
or her own story to tell. Our problems increase tenfold when we have to
go from one department to another, due to poor and unfriendly
infrastructure as well as the distances," he said.
the classes, he said that most of the lectures can be understood via
recordings, however, some assignments require vision, he said, adding
that one of his friend quit MA Education, because one assignment
required drawing diagrams, which he could not. On asking for
consideration, the teacher responded with, "you should have thought of
this, before taking admission".
There are no extra curriculum
activities for the disabled, Ahmed mentioned, adding, "I have never
witnessed sports for blinds in KU."
Problems faced by the disabled at
KU are multifaceted. Another sightless student Sheikh Uzair Hakeem
expressing the same problems said that unfortunately in our country,
there is no implementation of laws and promises, particularly for
"We are surviving in this atmosphere through self
help basis," Hakeem said, adding that in our country legislation for
women, labour and minorities is present, but not for the disabled.
a female student, Tehmina Raza, also visually disabled said that being a
woman makes it twice as difficult for her to travel. She keeps to
herself mostly. The visually impaired students rely on a junior to give
their written exams at the university, however, at times it becomes a
bone of contention, explained Raza. "Many times students do not attempt
the exam due to the unavailability of a writer," she said.
DT, KU Students Advisor Ansar Rizvi, accepted the problems faced by the
handicapped student, and said, "KU has a perpetual financial crises due
to lack of grants from Higher Education Commission (HEC) and very low
He informed that a few days ago, the KU admin
initiated a shuttle service for students, which was free for the
disabled, but political student organisations created pressure for its
closure. He also admitted to a lack of sports activities for handicapped
students, and said that the sports director deals with these matters.
to a question about a blind students union, Rizvi said, "I will provide
all necessary support and assistance, if they contact me for any
He also informed that the disabled students can submit admission forms at the department, but many of them are unaware of the exemption.
KU Registrar Dr Mansoor Ahmed also accepted the existing problems and
said he will provide all assistance and approve their due demands, if
they approach him. When asked about the number of disabled students
enrolled at the university, the registrar asked he would appreciate if
he was provided with the requested statistics.
KU Dean of Arts
Malahat Kalim Sherwani said, "Braille books are available in the seminar
libraries of English Department and Library and Information Science
Department (LISD). Also, the LISD is providing blind students with
training to operate computer and other basic necessary equipments and
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Education boards asked to eliminate cheating practices
Karachi: Chairmen of all education boards in Sindh have been
directed to stop the use of unfair means during ongoing examination of
SSC part I and II and take effective measures in this regard, said
Additional Secretary (Board) Saeed Ahmed Shaikh. He said there were
enormous complaints regarding the blatant use of unfair means/ copy
culture during on-going matriculation exams which need prompt action by
the concerned board authorities. He said that central control room
established on the directives of the provincial chief minister was
closely monitoring the conduct of examinations and responding
immediately to the complaints in any examination centre throughout the
province. He further said the law enforcement agencies had been directed
to provide security to the candidates, invigilators and other
examination staff so that peaceful and fearless atmosphere could be ensured during the examination. Daily times
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15 caught cheating in Class IX exam
Karachi: At least 15 students were caught cheating
during their class IX chemistry exams of the Secondary School
Certificate on Monday.
The students were caught when Board of Secondary Education Karachi
(BSEK) chairman Fasihuddin Khan, secretary Hoor Mazhar and controller of
examinations Noman Ahsan made surprise visits to different examination
During their visit to White House Grammar School's Gulshan branch, they caught one girl cheating.
At the Baldia Government Boys Secondary School, they found four boys
who were cheating in the exam. Another student was caught cheating at
Al-Noor Islamia School in Korangi.
Four boys were caught red-handed at the Allama Iqbal Government Boys Secondary School in Federal B Area.
During the board officials' visit to The Karachi Academy in F.B Area Block 2, they caught five girls cheating in exams.
Their means of cheating - cellphones and notes - were confiscated and
their answer sheets were marked with a note from the centre
Their cases have been forwarded to the unfair means committee for review.
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704 students caught cheating over a week
Hyderabad: A total of 704 students had been caught
using unfair means till Monday in Secondary School Certificate (SSC)
Part-I and II examinations since the exams began on April 9, reported
monitoring teams of the Board of Intermediate and Secondary Education
The huge number included 206 cases of copying and 49 cases of
impersonating another student, the teams reported to BISE chairman Prof
Eng Abdul Aleem Khanzada at a meeting held here on Monday.
Team officials told the meeting that around 115,000 candidates were
appearing for SSC part I and II exams in 206 examination centres in nine
districts under the jurisdiction of BISE Hyderabad.
They are; Hyderabad, Badin, Matiari, Shaheed Benazirabad, Jamshoro,
Dadu, Tando Mohammad Khan, Tando Allahyar and Thatta. The officials
stressed on improving security arrangements in examination centres.
Speaking at the meeting, BISE chairman Prof Khanzada expressed his
satisfaction over the performance and efficiency of monitoring teams and
other staff during examinations which would continue till April 18. He
said that it was the responsibility
of examination centres' staff to stop the use of mobile phones and other unfair means during exams.
Mirpurkhas correspondent adds: Candidates appearing for SSC part I
and II exams in Umerkot, Tharparkar, Sanghar and Mirpurkhas districts
are openly using unfair means despite visits by surveillance teams of
the BISE Mirpurkhas.
Instead of discouraging the menace, the invigilation staff at exam
centres condone and in most cases even facilitate them in solving their
According to a press release issued by BISE Mirpurkhas on Monday,
surveillance teams headed by Prof Abdul Hameed Shaikh had carried out
inspection visits at various examination centres and caught many
students cheating, including eight copy cases.
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Academic year starts without textbooks
Sukkur: Despite start of new academic session of
2013, the provincial education department and Sindh Textbook Board
Jamshoro have failed to provide free books to students.
Earlier, the Sindh government had taken a decision to provide free of
cost books to deserving and poor students every year in an attempt to
increase enrolment of children in schools.
About 200,000 boys and girls are enrolled in more than 1,300
educational institutions from class-I to class-X in Sukkur district but
they are still awaiting supply of books because of what inside sources
described as carelessness of the Sindh government and Sindh Textbook
Last year, parents faced a shortage of books and this year there were
no books at all. According to sources, school managements have
collected books from the students who had moved to higher classes and
started the academic session.
On the other hand, to save precious time of their children, parents
and teachers are requesting their relatives, friends and philanthropists
to extend help in supplying old books.
In case of private school students, parents were compelled to buy
costly book from bazaars and markets. They are also facing shortage of
District Education Officer Tehsin Soomro told reporters that the
schedule of books supply had not been received from the textbook board.
He expressed the hope that books would be supplied at the end of April. Dawn
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