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Authorities seem least bothered about NED University’s financial crunch

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Authorities seem least bothered about NED University’s financial crunch
Karachi:March 12: Once considered an embodiment of excellence in its field, the NED University of Engineering and Technology no longer seems to be a priority for those at the helm of its affairs, including its chancellor, Sindh Governor Dr Ishratul Ebad Khan, who was, on Thursday morning, absent from yet another of the varsity's convocation.

The governor, seen later in the day as the chief guest of a ceremony organised at the Karachi Press Club to launch provincial information adviser Maula Bux Chandio's book, was supposed to preside over the 24th NED convocation at its main campus, where 1,976 gra duating students were starting a new chapter in their lives.

According to an assistant professor at the varsity, the last convocation Governor Ebad attended was in 2009
According to an assistant professor at the varsity, the last convocation Governor Ebad attended was in 2009

 “He [Ebad] did not make it last year too. In fact, I can’t even recall the last time he attended the university’s convocation,” an NED official requesting anonymity told The News.

“It’s not only about his [Ebad’s] absence in convocations, it’s actually about his and other high-ups’ lack of interest in the NED and that has worsened its affairs,” he added.

The official said it was heart-wrenching to see one of the best public universities being neglected by its chancellor and pro-chancellor, provincial education minister Nisar Khuhro.

“The university’s financial crunch, mismanagement and lack of accountability put the future of so many students at risk.”

The official said students were direct victims of whatever was going on in the university. “The NED doesn’t feature in the Higher Education Commission’s ranking because of certain reasons, however its shining students and their reputation in the market are its real pride,” he added.

“The persisting crises have caused a serious shortage of facilities. Not even basic ones required to create a modern atmosphere of learning for students are available.”

Discussing the crisis, the official said the university’s departments had even run out of printers and stationery.

“How can you expect teachers to be at their best when there aren’t even papers available to them to print tests for their students?”
Financial crunch

The HEC’s contribution for every NED student is around Rs97,000 while the expenses incurred on each student come to about Rs137,000.

“This year, the HEC provided around Rs1.003 billion to the NED, but the expenditures now are considerably higher as well because of the increase in salaries and the inflation rate,” the official said.

There are over 9,000 students studying in the university in Bachelor’s and Master’s programmes and 84 PhD students.

“The university has been compelled to increase the fee structure,” the official said. “In just three years, the fee has been doubled.”

In 2013, undergraduate students were supposed to pay around Rs14,000 each year. The amount has reached Rs29,000 now.

Responding to The News queries, NED University vice chancellor Prof Dr Muhammad Afzal Haque said he had assumed charge of his office in March 2013. At that time, he added, the annual deficit had crossed over Rs1400 million and the university had taken loans from commercial banks.

“The liabilities have been reduced to Rs622 million during my three-year tenure and all loans have been paid back with despite the high interest rate.”

Haque, who is serving the last year of his tenure, said a number of short courses had been introduced to generate more funds and new departments were set up to overcome the crisis.

“The numbers of seats in high-significance departments including electrical and mechanical engineering have been increased. Besides, more categories of self-financed seats have been introduced too.”The news.
If you born poor, its not your fault....But if you die poor, its your fault...."Bill Gates"