Karachi Literature Festival | MUET convocation

5th Karachi Literature Festival to begin on Feb 7
Karachi, Feb 01: Founded in 2010, the Karachi Literature Festival (KLF) will begin its fifth edition on February 7, 2014, announced Ameena Sayyid and KLF director Asif Farrukhi at a press conference on Friday.

Over 180 Pakistani and 34 international authors, poets and academics will grace the Festival, including the renowned historian and Mahatma Gandhi's grandson, Dr Rajmohan Gandhi ( keynote speaker at the inauguration; the award-winning novelist, Kamila Shamshie, and the Pakistani BBC broadcaster, Raza Ali Abidi, both of whom will be the keynote speakers at the closing ceremony.

It is for the first time that, Sayyid announced, awards will be given to authors for three different prize categories: KLF-Coca-Cola Best Non-Fiction Book Prize, KLF-Embassy of France Prize, and KLF Peace Prize. The panel of judges for the prizes include some of Pakistan's most eminent critics, writers and scholars, who have short-listed three books for each prize category.

The KLF-Embassy of France Prize has been instituted to promote excellence in fiction written in the English language by a Pakistani author.

The KLF Peace Prize is a joint project of the KLF and the Consulate General of Germany in Karachi and the Embassy of Germany in Islamabad to recognize books that promote peace, international understanding, and tolerance.

Saiyid elaborated that this year there is a range of interesting sessions and events planned for the Festival. Among the many literary luminaries, academics, and journalists participating, both from Pakistan and abroad, there will be Ashis Nandy, Kuldip Nayar, Mushir ul Hasan, Moni Mohsin, Amjad Islam Amjad, Asma Jahangir, Amar Jaleel, Attiya Dawood, Bina Shah, Bushra Ansari, Fehmida Riaz, H.M. Naqvi, Hamida Khuhro, Kishwar Naheed, Maleeha Lodhi, Mohammed Hanif, Mustansar Hussain Tarar, Pervez Hoodbhoy, Sharmeen Obaid Chinoy, Shehnaz Wazir Ali, Shehzad Roy, Uzma Aslam Khan, Zehra Nigah, Zia Mohyeddin and Zubaida Jalal, among others.

According to the programme, proceedings on the opening day will commence with a discussion with Moni Mohsin; a session titled 'The Power of the Fourth Estate'; and a session on Faiz. These will be followed by a conversation with Mustansar Hussain Tarar; a session with Bushra Ansari; a session on 'Literature and Music in Pakistan' with Tina Sani, Zeb Bangash, and Sarmad Khoosat as panellists; readings by Intizar Hussain with the launch of Silver Jubilee edition of his novel Basti, and a conversation with Rajmohan Gandhi. The first day will end with a Mushaira.

Important sessions on the second day of the festival include 'Contemporary Fiction at Home and the Diaspora'; New Voices in Sindhi Poetry'; 'Shayer e Awam: Habib Jalib'; 'Glitter of the Silver Screen'; 'Qawwali Music and the Sufi Poetry Tradition'; conversations with Kamila Shamsie, Uzma Aslam Khan, Zehra Nigah, and Raza Ali Abidi; dramatic storytelling by Nadia Jamil; and Dastangoi by Danish Hussain, Darain Shahidi and Mahmood Farooqui.

Highlights of the third day will include sessions on 'Baloch Literature and Landscapes'; 'Karachi: From Stone Age to Cyber Age'; 'Bringing Down the Gender Walls'; 'Drama and the Small Screen' with Haseena Moin, Sultana Siddiqui, Shakeel, Seema Taher Khan and Attiya Dawood as speakers; conversations with Ashis Nandy, Navid Shahzad, Mohammed Hanif, Amar Jaleel, and Abdullah Hussain; Readings by Zia Mohyeddin; 'Chulbuk Chori' a play by Thespians Theatre; screenings of Sharmeen Obaid Chinoy's films; kathak performance by Nahid Siddiqui; and a concert by Laal.

The festival will include launches of about 28 books including Dr Rajmohan Gandhi's book Punjab: A History from Aurangzeb to Mountbatten, The Kashmir Dispute 1947 by A.G. Noorani, I'll Find My Way an anthology of short stories edited by Muniza Naqvi, The Rest is Silence: Zahoor ul Ikhlaq: Art and Society in Pakistan, Jazeera Sukhanwaran by Ghulam Abbas, Delhi by Heart by Raza Rumi, The Prisoner by Omer Shahid Hamid, Urdu Afsanay by Hasan Manzar, and What's Wrong with Pakistan? By Babar Ayaz. Daily times

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457 awarded degrees, medals at MUET convocation
Hyderabad: Expressing pleasure over progress of Mehran University of Engineering and Technology (MUET), Senior Education Minister Nisar Ahmed Khuhro has said it is really a pride that the university meets international standards of education among the public sector universities.

Addressing the 16th convocation of the MUET here on Tuesday, he said that according to 2011 quality standards for ranking, it was counted among the best universities of the world while nationally it was ranked the second. He said the number of PhD scholars from the MUET was more than any other public sector university of the country and that was why it was an ISO certified varsity.

The minister said the university was involved in 22 international level linkages and had been awarded with different foreign scholarships. He disclosed that a centre had been established under USAID funding in the university over water resources while an Asian centre and faculty for research publication had also been established which was really appreciable. He lauded university's efforts in development sector especially in the wake of Sanghar Sugar Mill biogas plant and Thar coal research project. He expressed the hope that the university would soon be counted among the 100 best universities of the world.

He congratulated the newly appointed vice chancellor of the university, Dr Mohammad Aslam Uqaili and said the university would hopefully progress under his leadership. He urged that efforts should be made to achieve 80 per cent literacy rate. He regretted that literacy rate generally in Pakistan and particularly in Sindh was lower than other countries, stating that in the today's world of technology, a literate man was one who could write and read but standards of literacy were now changing in the world and Pakistan had to take steps with those changing trends.

He congratulated the university administration and vice chancellor for university's golden jubilee celebrations.

Speaking on the occasion, Vice Chancellor Dr Uqaili said current enrolment of the university was 7,546 which included 6,000 undergraduates 1,464 masters and 82 PhD scholars.

He said today the university had 104 PhD scholars against just three in 2003. He said the university had provided facilities to researchers greatly.

Degrees, gold and silver medals and certificates of merit were given 457 students, he said.

On the occasion, top faculty graduates got three gold medals, best graduates eight gold medals, 21 position holders got silver medals and merit certificates while 21 second position holders got certificates of merit and another 21 third position holders got certificates of merit and degrees.

Sikandar Almani was declared the best faculty graduate with two gold medals and Sharmeen Abid Shaikh also got two gold medals for being top faculty graduate. Maryam Arain, Hizbullah Memon, Mohammad Ramiz Rajput, Mohammad Azhar, Aurangzeb Rajput, Maria Kumari and Fida Hussain also got gold medals in different faculties. Dawn

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Salu cancels candidate's BA, MA degrees
Khairpur: The Shah Abdul Latif University (SALU), Khairpur, has cancelled Bachelor's and masters' degrees of a candidate who had graduated in 2006.

A notification issued by the controller of examinations of the university said the degrees of BA and MA in political science issued on May 23, 2006 to Ashiq Hussain, son of Dewan Syed Ghulam Abbas, with seat numbers 42135 and 66470 stood cancelled.

In addition, it said, all other certificates issued to the candidate might also be treated as cancelled.

SALU spokesperson told this correspondent on phone that before taking the final decision the controller had issued notices as per requirement to the candidate concerned and published in newspapers. Dawn

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Rival student groups clash at CMC
Larkana: Two groups of students traded fire over teasing of newcomers at the Chandka Medical College on Wednesday, forcing the college administration to call in police to pacify the situation.

Activists of the Jeay Sindh Students Federation (JSSF) and Jamiat Talaba-i-Islam (JTI), student wings of Jeay Sindh Qaumi Mahaz (JSQM) and Jamiat Ulema-i-Islam-Fazl (JUI-F), who had fought just three days ago at central canteen over some petty issue, locked horns again this time over senior students' throwing taunts at newcomers, said sources.

Luckily, no one was hurt in both the clashes, which spread panic on the campus and the college administration immediately called in police to bring the situation under control.

The administration also sought help of local leaders of JUI-F and JSQM, Nasir Mehmood Soomro and Athar Soomro, to make peace between the two groups.

Dr Riaz Ahmed Shaikh, vice principal of the CMC said that the talks were held between the students leaders of both groups in the presence of CMC Principal Prof Dr Khursheed Ahmed Abbasi.

The meeting found JSSF members guilty of teasing the newcomers and decided they would visit the hostel rooms of JTI-affiliated students they had taunted and beg pardon from them over the incident, he said.

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School vans
Karachi: The director-general of private institutions Dr Mansoob Hussain Siddiqui on Tuesday called an urgent meeting of private school associations that was attended by association heads Khalid Shah and Sharafuz Zaman, registrar Rafia Mallah and monitoring officer Ikhlaq Ahmed, where they discussed safety issues related to school vans being run on CNG.

It was decided at the meeting that schools would check driving licences of the school van drivers every three months. All school vans should be painted a uniform colour and those running on CNG should have a sticker identifying this on their windshield.

Meanwhile, the Sui Southern Gas Company announced the CNG stations would remain closed from 8am on Wednesday to 8am on Thursday. Dawn

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