Students organise pre-budget rally; demand allocation of 4% of GDP for education


The students belonging to various parts of country organised a pre-budget rally demanding allocation of 4 per cent of GDP for education. They also called for 25 per cent of the total education budget to be allocated for higher education and for introduction of immediate reforms in the higher education sector.

The rally was organised by Anjumn Tulaba Islam (ATI) Punjab in Murree. They were holding the placards and chanting slogans in favour of their demands.

Addressing on the occasion ATI Pakistan Secretary Information Syed Waqar Ali Shah demanded that realizing the importance of education for the socio-economic development of the country, federal and provincial governments should allocate 4% of GDP for education in the upcoming budget for the financial year 2016-17.

He also urged the provincial governments to allocate funds up to 25% of the total education budget for universities and colleges.

Former ATI Media Cell chairman Muhammad Akram Rizvi said that the recent QS ranking of higher education institutes of the world has proved another Panama leaks and exposed the policies of the rulers and the concerned institutions towards promoting higher education in the country.

He said that according to the ranking Pakistani, higher education system has been ranked at the bottom with 9.2 score as compared to China 83.5, South Korea 80.1, Singapore 62.3, India 60.9, Chile 46.7, Saudi Arabia 36.7, Turkey 26.1, Kazakhstan 25.1, Lebanon 19.8, Ukraine 16.6, United Arab Emirates 10.9 scores.

Amir Ismail said that huge amount of public money is being misused on organizing the meetings of vice chancellors from all over the country at an expensive hotel in Lahore May 23-25, 2016. Such expensive events should be avoided and money should be spent on the missing facilities in Pakistani universities and on promoting a culture of research in the country. They appealed to the prime minister and Punjab chief minister to take notice of the situation.

They were of the view that the autonomy of the universities which is a pillar of the higher education system has been undermined through various HEC notifications and HEC administration is directly interfering in academic, administrative, and financial functions of the public and private sector universities.

The recent announcement of the Centralized Testing Service by Federal HEC for the provincially chartered universities would take away the admission rights from the universities and said that after the 18th constitutional amendment, no federal entity could interfere in the provincial affairs of higher education and universities.