No headway in setting up first women university in capital despite lapse of three years

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ISLAMABAD: The Capital Administration and Development Division’s (CADD) plan to upgrade the Islamabad Model College for Girls F-7/2 branch into a university has been put on the back burner as no headway has been made in this regard despite a lapse of three years.

The government’s apathy towards education could be judged from the fact that the much-needed scheme to set up the university has yet to see the light of the day despite the allocation of funds for the third consecutive year.

CADD had prepared a plan to upgrade the Islamabad Model College for Girls, F-7/2 branch, into a university back in 2015 but no headway has been made in this regard hitherto.

A senior official wishing anonymity told Pakistan Today that the dream of upgrading the college into university could not be materialised despite the allocation of the funds as CADD Minister Dr Tariq Fazal Chaudhry did not pursue the case effectively.

“CADD Minister Dr Tariq Fazal Chaudhry is mainly responsible for non-up gradation of the college into university because of his full-time engagement in Panama case and the subsequent events,” the official added.

CADD had initiated the process of establishing the first university for women in the federal capital in collaboration with the Higher Education Commission (HEC), but due to the negligence of CADD minister and Cabinet Division, the funds allocated for the project lapsed twice. However, the official said that if the budget lapses for a third consecutive year, then the case cannot be put up again for hearing in the National Assembly, putting the whole plan in jeopardy.

It was decided that the university will start its educational activities in F-7/2 College in 2015 because there was enough capacity in the institute and there was only a need for some equipment for science laboratories. But even then, the allocated budget lapsed twice.

The matter is being delayed due to the bureaucratic system, and the females of the capital are waiting for completion of legal requirements and infrastructure of the university so that they could pursue their higher education with ease.

IMCG, established in 1967, was initially known as the Federal Government (FG) College for Women. In 2011, its name was changed along with all FG colleges, which were renamed as model colleges.

However, the sources said that it is quite astonishing that though President Mamnoon Hussain has already approved the summary of the proposed university, the case is yet to be resolved due to alleged bureaucratic hurdles.

Despite repeated attempts, CADD Minister Dr Tariq Fazal Chaudhry and CADD Seceraty Azhar Ali Chaudhry could not be reached for comments on the issue.

However, when contacted by Pakistan Today, HEC Media Director Ayesha Ikram said that the HEC initiated the up gradation of college to a university on NOC from CADD Division dated September 3, 2014. She said that without the approval of charter, HEC is constrained to initiate the project and academic activities, adding that they have sent a position paper to planning commission describing the current status.

The project was approved on November 19, 2014, at a cost of Rs998.436 million including the provision of necessary buildings such as VC secretariat, bachelor’s faculty hostel, ICT facilities and salaries of university faculty and staff for three years, Ayesha added. She further said that Rs10 million had been released in 2015-16, but could not be utilised.

The HEC prepared the draft charter and sent it to CADD through the ministry of education on September 4, 2015, and since then it is with CADD, she added.