False accusations by PUASA condemned

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The Higher Education Commission (HEC) and Punjab University (PU) teaching community on Friday condemned the PU teachers claiming the ranking of PU had fallen from five to four. The condemnation came amidst an escalating row between the pro-Jamaat-i-Islami (JI) teachers and the pro-Vice Chancellor (VC) Teacher’s Front (TF). On Friday, members of the Punjab University Academic Staff Association (PUASA) addressed a press conference at the Lahore Press Club, to express their reservations over the recommendations of the PU VC search committee.
PUASA’s 2011 President Dr Maher Saeed Akhter and Secretary Iftikhar Tarar alleged the current PU VC Dr Mujahid Karman had mismanaged PU and his recommendation was against merit. However, Maher avoided commenting on Dr Zafer Ali Jadoun’s candidature since both are members of the JI. When asked about the academic career of Dr Jadoun which includes a third division in FSc and two second divisions, Dr Maher Saeed did not comment. Maher, however, alleged the current PU VC had violated merit and made illegal appointments, which the Punjab Assembly was aware off. He alleged PU’s overall ranking had fallen from four to five during Dr Kamran’s tenure,. He said the teachers’ community would resist his re-appointment as PU VC. However, PUASA’s claims against the current PU VC were refuted by HEC, PU syndicate members and the PU teaching community.
Speaking to Pakistan Today, HEC Executive Director Dr Sohail H Naqvi said the allegations were just propaganda since the HEC had yet to release its ranking. He said a comprehensive ranking would soon be released however the claims of the PU teachers were false. HEC showed concern over the politics by pro-JI teachers to secure the PU VC slot. Similarly, PU Syndicate member Shumila Gull said, “As an elected member of syndicate and a PU teaching community representative, I condemn the PUASA propaganda against PU VC Dr Mujahid Kamran. The accusing PUASA has no legal standing after December 31, 2011 and is just a dummy. The teaching community rejected them during the last syndicate elections.”
Similarly, a PU PhD scholar, on anonymity, said those who do not deserve to be teachers had become Professors as ASA members because of JI support. He asked, “If Dr Maher Saeed will not accept the search committee’s decision, why did he apply for the slot of PU VC to the same committee? The propaganda only started once he was rejected.”

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