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Illegal admissions' practice at Punjab University

'Managed' admissions bulldoze students rights
Lahore, Dec 22: Admission to a prestigious educational institution is certainly an uphill task for which students have to burn midnight oil and to face a tough competition for meeting the merit.

However, securing admission in violation of merit is no doubt an unethical and illegal practice since it deprives eligible candidates of their right. Last week the Punjab University (PU) issued a press statement in connection with detention of a senior faculty member whose son-in-law was nominated in FIR for being involved in incidence of violence at the university campus recently.

Besides clarifying the university administration's point of view the statement, duly published in various newspapers, also revealed that the said close relative of the senior teacher had managed his admission in the PU. According to the PU press statement, Hafiz Farhan, son-in-law of director of Institute of Geology Prof Dr Nasir Ahmad, was a student and nazim of Islami Jamiat Talaba (IJT) at the University of Sargodha who recently managed his admission in the PU.

The very word "managed" suggests that merit was not considered in this particular case and efforts were made to secure admission in the PU.

A senior PU teacher, on condition of anonymity, said close relatives and family members of the university teachers have not to face a tough competition unlike other aspirants. The teachers being well aware of all rules and regulations make maneuver to favour their people, he added.

Quoting an example, he said recently some admissions at the PU Institute of Education and Research (IER) Department of Elementary Education were scraped when it came to light that some candidates were given preference to others.

He said two separate merit lists for admission to MEd programme were prepared, one for candidates having BEd qualifications and one for those having MA/MSc degree along with BEd degree. Whereas the rules allowed only a single merit list for both types of candidates, he added. The teacher said that since 15 extra marks were awarded for MA/MSc degree therefore the manipulation facilitated all such candidates to get double benefit, a separate merit list and more marks. He said total seats for the said programme were 35, adding over 20 selected candidates were those having extra degree of MA/MSc.

IER Director Dr Hafiz Muhammad Iqbal, when contacted, said the issue was taken up by the institute's faculty council, a statutory body, which scraped the admissions on the ground as to how two separate lists were prepared.

To a question, he said the case would be sent to the vice chancellor to initiate an inquiry in this connection.

However, PU Registrar Prof Dr Muhammad Naeem Khan believes fundamental rights of the candidates are protected and admission process runs according to merit in the university.

He further said the administration expect that department heads and chairmen have been exercising due diligence and monitoring of admissions. Academic circles have expressed concerns over the "managed" admissions in the Punjab University, saying the administration should take measures to ensure a transparent admission process so that eligible candidates are not deprived of their rights. The News

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PU department admin criticised for breaking university rules. MA Music result controversy
Lahore: The final result of the first batch of Punjab University's Institute of Art and Design MA Music has been subject to controversy, as some students allege the result is being revised and tampered to pass some students who had failed, learnt on Sunday.

Some documents indicate that some elements in the administration are corrupting the examination system.

Violation of rules in third semester: The documents disclose that the result of MA Music's third semester was displayed in July 2008, according to which only three students passed. The result of the same semester had been revised and displayed in December, according to which four students had passed. Ghulam Abbas, Mazher Hameed and Nadeem Riaz had originally passed and Syed Afaq Hussein was added to the promotion list in Decemnber.

PU Semester System Committee's senior official said the result cannot be revised after four months of its display, which had been done in the third semester of the MA Music Programme. He said the result can be revised if a student applied for it within two weeks of display of result.

Violation of rules in fourth semester: Sources say the result for the fourth semester is also being revised, and four more students will be promoted. The result of the fourth semester, displayed on November 21, only promoted three students. The students who had failed in this semester are being reconsidered for the same semester even after the display of result. The students will be called for viva on December 23, which is again in violation of the rules as the result had been announced a month prior to the reconsideration through viva. Even after the lapse of one month after the display of semester results, the department's administration has not forwarded it to the university's Vice-Chancellor Dr Mujahid Kamran for notification.

PU student Zahid Shehzad submitted a complaint with the office of Provincial Ombudsman against the same issue. The Ombudsman has ordered the administration to submit a report in this regard. Examination rules of the university are being adversely affected due to mismanagement, in an attempt to benefit those students who are blue-eyed of the administration, a source privy to the developments said.

PU Institute of Art and Design Head Muhammad Zafarullah said examination results can be revised if the student applied for it. He said the revision of the result had been started before he took his office. Former Music Programme Head Asrar Hussain said the Semester System Committee could revise the result of all candidates, if not of any individual. Daily Times

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University of Health Sciences (UHS), Lahore announced BDS results
Lahore: The University of Health Sciences (UHS), Lahore, has declared the result of first professional BDS annual examination 2008, held in November 2008. According to the result notification on Saturday, a total of 329 candidates appeared out of whom 176 were declared successful with a 53.66 pass percentage. As many as 152 candidates could not get through the examination while one candidate's result was later on. The failed candidates are required to submit their admission forms on or before 14-01-2009 and with double fee on or before 22-01-2009. The supplementary examination 2008 will commence from 30-01-2009. The News

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No shelter from rain: PPSC leaves parents shivering in cold during its exams
Lahore: The Punjab Public Service Commission (PPSC) did not provide shelter to candidate's parents from rain at its examination centres on Saturday, students and parents said. Female students and their parents while condemning the PPSC demanded that the government order the PPSC to set up examination centres in their nearest districts.

Far-flung districts: Around 8,000 females across the province on Saturday sit the PPSC exam for the post of lecturers. The PPSC set up two centres at the Board of intermediate and Secondary Education and the Punjab University. Most of the candidates came from the far-flung districts of the province, including Dera Ghazi (DG) Khan, Rajanpur, Multan, Mianwali, Bahawalpur, Taxila, Sialkot, Gujrat and Jhang. A good number of parents were forced to wait for their children in the rain. Ayesha, a mother of a female candidate, said, they had come from Multan. She said that the PPSC should provide shelter to the parents.

Cold: Muhammad Ismail, father of a female candidate, said they had come from Mianwali as his daughter had to sit the exam. He said poor arrangements on the part of the PPSC had left thousands of parents shivering in cold. Zunaira, Ismail's daughter, condemned the PPSC for not setting up examination centres in their nearest cities. Mahwish, a candidate from Bahawalpur, said that due to the rain and long distance many of her city fellows could not sit the exam. She said the PPSC should have erected tents. Farhat Hussain, husband of a candidate, said her wife was in the examination hall and he along with his children was waiting for her in the rain. A PPSC official, seeking anonymity, said he did not know why the commission had not set up centres in other districts. He, however, had given relaxation to the latecomers to sit the exam. Daily Times

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