Islamabad:June 23:The Punjab and Islamabad chapters of Federation of All Pakistan Universities Academic Staff Associations, and Academic Staff Associations of Quaid-i-Azam University, Allama Iqbal Open University, International Islamic University and National University of Modern Languages expressing deep concern over the huge financial cut on education in the 2012-13 budget have demanded increase in the allocation for education.
FAPUASA Vice-President Prof Zahid Majeed, PAPUASA, Punjab chapter, President Dr. Suhail Aftab Qureshi, ASA QAU President Dr M Gulraiz Akhter talking to this scribe said that the government should immediately increase the higher education budget and make it proportional with the increase in salaries. They asked the Finance Ministry to release the remaining part of fourth tranche of all public-sector universities.
They said that teachers are the backbone of universities who are suffering due to “wrong promotion policy of Higher Education Commission”. In a meeting of Punjab chapter of FAPUASA held at Engineering University, Lahore, the members also showed concern on the increasing number of violence incidents in the universities of Pakistan. They were of the view that such actions should immediately be stopped where teachers’ integrity is affected. They showed full solidarity with the ASA, Punjab University, and condemned students act of beating a respectable faculty of the university.
In a resolution, the meeting asked for enhancing the retirement age of the university teachers from 6o to 65 years as promised by HEC.
Dr. Suhail Aftab Qureshi said that forthcoming General Body meeting of the federation in Islamabad on June 28 would formulate future policy.
The QAU ASA asked HEC to pay the amount required for BPS Incentive Scheme as part of the budget earmarked for Tenure Track System as the Incentive Scheme was part and parcel of TTS programme promulgated in 2007 which is a performance-based relief for those teachers who are not offered hefty and lucrative TTS package.
The HEC is completing meeting all the expenses whatsoever of TTS faculty but refuses even providing salary budget of BPS faculty. Universities are being pressurised to use resources for income generation and increase fees. Talking to his scribe on the eve of presentation of 20012-13 budget in National Assembly, Dr Sohail Naqvi, Executive Director, HEC, had stated that HEC is going to write a letter to all universities not increase the salaries as announced in the budget. He said this in the wake of rumours that the government is contemplating an election budget whereby the salaries will be doubled.
One wonders what chaotic conditions HEC letter would have triggered in the universities. HEC subsequently did not write the letter as it turned out to be a non-election pragmatic budget announcing a meagre 20 per cent increase in the salaries.The news.