PTI vows to build ‘university per district’ in KP

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PESHAWAR- Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) has once again vowed to make a university in every district of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP). This was reinforced by the Chief Minister KP Parvez Khattak on Tuesday as PTI makes an effort to fulfill promises made during the 2013 general elections.

Chief Minister Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP) Pervez Khattak had promised that KP government would establish a university campus in each of the provincial districts while addressing an event held at Shuhada-e-APS Memorial Library in higher education department Peshawar in 2015.

The establishment of public university in each district has been mentioned in the 2013 general elections manifesto of Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI). According to PTI’s elections manifesto, they promised KP residents, if voted into power will establish public university in each district in collaboration with private sector.

This was part of ‘Education for All’ component of the manifesto to provide standardised education to the society. The manifesto stated that quality of higher education had deteriorated with the exodus of qualified professionals, facing continuous decline in the absence of professional capacity of faculty members.

Furthermore it read: “Applied research is almost non-existent. For a country of 160 million, there are only 85 universities with approved charters, of which only 8 in the public sector and 18 in the private sector are degree-awarding institutions. “The PTI is determined to launch a national education movement based on equity to achieve increased access and improved quality of education at all levels,” the manifesto read.

ANP, in the past tenure in KP, has established total of 10 universities in the province. The campuses includes up-gradation of Islamia College Peshawar to University, establishments of Bacha Khan University Charsadda, Abdul Wali Khan University Mardan (AWKUM), University of Swabi, Shaheed Benazir Bhutto University Upper Dir, University of Haripur, Khushal Khattak University Karak, Women University of Swabi, sub campus of AWKUM in Lower Dir and Chitral.

When asked about lack of resources, she said after 18th amendments it was responsibility of the provinces to increase resources and provide education to the people at their doorsteps.

According to the budget documents of 2016-17, funds have been allocated to establishment of various campuses in Mardan, Swabi, Buner, Upper Dir and Chitral. This includes establishment of Women University campus in Swabi with an allocation of Rs900 million, and that of Women University at Mardan, for which Rs100 million have been earmarked.

Furthermore, for strengthening of AWKUM Buner campus, total of Rs50 million have been allocated but it’s not the establishment of new campus. For establishment of sub campus of Peshawar’s engineering university has been reflected in the Annual Development Program (ADP) but no funds have been allocated for it.

Similarly up gradation of Chitral university has been mentioned in the ADP, but no funds have earmarked for its establishment.