Saturday, February 28, 2015

Jumbo Karachi Guide creating waves

Pakistan News & Features Services

Jumbo Karachi Guide, the pilot project of Jumbo City Guide Series brought out by Jumbo Infomedia, has been creating waves and its new advertising campaign has helped in creating greater awareness about the guidebook. 

Besides the corporate sector which has been particularly supportive of the initiative aimed at promoting the soft image of the country, quite a few organizations and individuals have hailed Jumbo Karachi Guide, the first of its kind publication in Pakistan. 

The updated editions of Jumbo Karachi Guide are also becoming increasingly popular among the students and researchers who find the information quite useful.

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

SSUET conducts Hajj balloting for employees

By Abdul Qadir Qureshi
(Pakistan News & Features Services)

The Sir Syed University of Engineering & Technology (SSUET), Karachi, will bear expenses of four of its employees to be sent to the Holy land for performing Hajj this year.

The four lucky employees were selected for the sacred pilgrimage at the Hajj balloting held under the supervision of Vice Chancellor, Prof Dr Jawaid Hassan Rizvii while Registrar, Engr Syed Abrar Ali, conducted the ceremony. 

The four successful candidates for Hajj were Ms. Saima Mehdi (Customer Service Executive), Mohammad Irfan (Naib Qasid), Abrar Haider (Security Guard) and Engr Nageen Shahid (Lecturer). 

Ms Urooj Fatima, Abad Hussain, Rao Muneer Ahmed and Engr Akhtar Hasan Ansari emerged on the waiting list. 

The Vice Chancellor Prof. Dr. Jawaid Hassan Rizvi congratulated the four lucky employees having been declared successful in the balloting. He urged them that while in the Holy land, pray for the progress of the university, the country and the Muslim Ummah.

SSUET to hold convocation on March 14

By Abdul Qadir Qureshi
(Pakistan News & Features Services)

The preparations are in full swing for the 18th Convocation of the Sir Syed University of Engineering and Technology (SSUET), Karachi, to be held on March 14 at the Karachi Expo Center. 

The arrangements for the coveted occasion were reviewed at a meeting held under the chairmanship of Vice Chancellor, Prof Dr Syed Jawaid H. Rizvi, and attended, among others, by Registrar, Engr Syed Abrar Ali, Dean of Engineering, and Chairpersons of various departments, Controller of Examination. 

The Vice Chancellor reviewed the arrangements, specially the security matters, besides administrative measures and issued necessary directives for holding the convocation in a befitting manner. 

Dr Rizvi pointed out that the SSUET graduates were serving in various countries of the world on high and important positions and were engaged in making new breakthroughs, not only in Pakistan, but also in European, American and other continents. 

He expressed his satisfaction that, since its inception, the SSUET has distinguished itself as a prestigious institution of the country dedicated to the promotion of science and technology. Its degree programmes, he said, are accredited by the Pakistan Engineering Council and the Higher Education Commission of Pakistan, and internationally it has full membership of Association of Commonwealth Universities and the UNESCO sponsored International Association of Universities. 

The Sir Syed University has collaboration with world famous universities like San-Jose and Johns Hopkins of USA and the University of Ottawa of Canada besides collaborating with three American and five leading British universities with students having the privilege of getting a degree from them, after studying in those Universities for only two years.

Sindhi Language Day celebrated in Toronto

By Abdul Qadir Qureshi
(Pakistan News & Features Services)

The Sindhi Community of Toronto and its surrounding cities celebrated Sindhi Language and Indus Civilization Day with full enthusiasm and spirit of Canada’s multiculturalism, by marking the International Mother Languages day.

On this occasion the intellectuals and writers of different communities highlighted the significance of Sindhi culture, heritage and literature in Sindh language whereas the children presented musical tableaus and a Sindhi singer enthralled audiences with his live performance. 

A prominent Canadian intellectual and political leader, Omer Latif, presented a paper titled ‘Sindh and Human Rights Issues’ in which he regretted that the heritage of Sindh, a centre of great civilization, has not been given due recognition. 

Prominent poet of Urdu and Progressive Writers Forum Canada’s chairman Munir Perviaz Saami in his speech highlighted resilience and depth of Sindhi Literature. He noted that the Sindhi literature is rich with the spirit of resistance against tyranny and oppression and quoted Rumi a Persian iconic poet who in a well know verse recognized Sindhis as people of distinct culture and expression.

He added that at the same time the centuries old traditions of Sindhi literature are so deep that verse often less quote writers stand out as an evidence of that richness. 

He shared the example from the poetry of Sachal Sarmast, Saami and Tanveer Abbasi which encompasses the human suffering, mutual pain, and resilience to readers to bold face all hegemony. 

An intellectual and writer from USA Dr Tahir Qazi in his paper ‘Influence of Shah Latif and Sufism on Sindh’ observed that after reading Shah Abdul Latif Bhitai, one comes to know the real treasures of Sindh and Sindhi language.  
On this occasion, renowned poetess of Sindhi and Urdu, Professor Azra Kandher, stated that Sindhi is among languages rich with literature, art and culture but this language has not been given due recognition yet.

She urged upon the elders of Sindhi community living away from their motherland to teach Sindhi to their youth so that they remain linked with their culture and heritage. 

Professor Raza Ghaloo also addressed the gathering and elaborated the evolution of Sindhi and other languages. He suggested that Urdu was also funded in Jacobabad area of Sindh. 

A senior leader of Sindhi community in North America, Abdul Razzaq Khushk, lauded the efforts of event’s organizers and appreciated the input and research work of other languages and communities intellectuals on Sindhi language and heritage through this event. 

Another Sindhi community leader, Khair Mohammad Kolachi, also spoke and welcomed the participants of the event. 

The Secretary Sindhi Adabi Sangat, Zulfiqar Shaikh, said that celebrating day of Sindhi language and heritage at world level is just to impart the world that Sindhi speaking people are moderate and against all sorts of extremism due to their rich literature and heritage of Indus civilization.

The Joint Secretary, Peetamber Lohano, also addressed the audience and welcomed the participants. 

Two groups of Sindhi children presented tableaus and performance of Urooj Adwani, Piryanka Ukrani, Hina Ukrani and Anjali Ukrani on famous Sindhi songs was highly lauded by the audiences whereas Eiman Pirzada and Mohammad Shahkar Shaikh also gave presentation on depth of Sindhi music. 

The most memorable side of this event was the performance of Sindhi vocalist, Jagdesh Bajaj, who sung popular Sindhi songs and Urdu ghazals lively, and the participants remained dancing in groups all the time. 

During the event, the newly elected office-bearers of Sindhi Association of North America (SANA) GTA chapter were administered oath through senior Sindhi community leader Abdul Razzaq Khushk. They included President, Peetamber Lohano, Vice President (General), Prof Azra Kandhar, Vice President (Female), Fatima Khawaja, General Secretary, Sahib Khan Shahani, Joint Secretary Naeem Akhtar Khatri, Information Secretary, Suresh Hotwani, Treasurer, Asif Memon, and members Executive Committee Dr Rashid Pirzada, Aijaz Kolachi and Mrs Roshan Abbasi.

Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Close coordination between ABAD, cantonment boards sought

By Abdul Qadir Qureshi
(Pakistan News & Features Services)

The Director General of the Military Lands & Cantonments, Major General (R) Furrukh Rashid, has announced that the building bye-laws in the cantonment areas would be amended in the light of suggestions from the Association of Builders & Developers of Pakistan (ABAD) in order to upgrade them technologically.

He made the announcement while talking to a delegation of ABAD, led by its chairman, Junaid Ashraf Taloo, which called on him at his office. The Additional Director General, Military Lands & Cantonments, Amir Rashid also attended the meeting. 

The ABAD delegation included chairman, Junaid Ashraf Taloo, Vice Chairman, Mohammad Hanif Memon, Chairman Southern Region, Mohammad Hassan Bakshi, Ex Senior Vice Chairman, Saleem Kassim Patel, Convener Cantonment Boards Sub-Committee, Arif Siddik, Co Convener, Cantonment Boards Sub-Committee, Haroon Karim and members Rizwan Adhia and Mahmood Tabba. 

DG Furrukh Rashid, while appreciating the role of ABAD in the promotion of construction industry, assured that issues of members of ABAD engaged in construction activities in cantonment areas will be resolved on priority. 

Saleem Kassim Patel gave a detailed briefing on the role of members of ABAD and demanded close coordination between ABAD, the Director’s Office and the offices of Cantonment Boards. 

Arif Siddik highlighted the issues of delays in the approval of projects of some members of ABAD. A detailed appraisal of delayed projects of members of ABAD was also done during the meeting. Speaking on the occasion, 

Junaid Ashraf Taloo suggested that in view of the delay in the approval of projects, the process of approval of projects in the Director’s office be made simple and short. At this point, 

DG Furrukh Rashid informed that he will consult his team in this connection to simplify the process of approval and also fix a time frame for approval of projects. 

Mohammad Hassan Bakshi suggested mandatory membership of ABAD for all builders engaged in construction activities in cantonment areas. Rizwan Adhia proposed one window operation for quick approval of projects of members of ABAD. 

At the end of the meeting, DG Furrukh Rashid said that the office of Director Military Lands & Cantonments was examining the process and policies for delay in the resolution of different issues and these will be resolved soon.

Sunday, February 15, 2015

Open House Job Fair at SSUET

By Abdul Qadir Qureshi 
(Pakistan News & Features Services)

Over 120 innovative projects produced by the final year students of Computer, Electronics, Civil, Telecom and Bio-Medical Engineering and Computer Science departments were put on display at the Open House Job Fair 2015 held at the Sir Syed University of Engineering and Technology (SSUET), Karachi, on February 14.

The fair was inaugurated by noted industrialist Sardar Yasin Malik and largely attended, among others, by prominent industrialists, businessmen, corporate professionals and dignitaries.  
Speaking on the occasion Sardar Yasin Malik lavished high praise for the SSUET, observing that the university was producing high quality professionals whose skills and expertise was appreciated even outside Pakistan. 

“Particularly Biomedical engineers of Sir Syed University have earned a name in the Middle East countries,” he reckoned. 

In his discourse, the SSUET Chancellor, Engr Mohammad Adil Usman observed that the Open House Job Fairs reflect the result of students’ four-year education, their skills and experience in a tangible form as the final year projects show how creatively charged students successfully transform their innovative ideas and concepts into cost-effective commercially viable products. 

The university, he pointed out, provides a research-friendly environment and encourages students to come up with new ideas by holding Open House Job Fairs to promote their scientific achievements. 

“Open House Job Fair provides an opportunity for students to have a direct inter-action with a large number of employers, who specifically explore talented graduating students for employment in their reputed organizations and often take advantage of an open house as an initial screening process when they have several open positions to fill”. 

Chancellor Adil Usman advised the students to compose compact resume, short in length and long in quality, to create a good first impression which counted a lot. 

“You have to be confident with positive attitude to break into the organizations seeking talent,” he stated. 

Earlier the Registrar, Engr Syed Abrar Ali, in his opening remarks pointed out that the SSUET is being run on non-profit basis by Aligarians and it lays great emphasis on practical and professional know-how with strict adherence to character building and career planning. Dr Bilal Alvi, Chairman Electronic Engineering Department, delivered the welcome address, while Prof Dr S M Makhdumi, Dean of Engineering, presented vote of thanks. 

Later chief guest Sardar Muhammad Yasin Malik, accompanied by Chancellor Engr Mohammed Adil Usman, Registrar Engr Syed Abrar Ali, Prof Dr S M Makhdumi, Dr Bilal Alvi and others, took a round of the fair and showed keen interest in the innovative projects on display.

Thursday, February 12, 2015

Bazm-e-Akram organize farewell reception for Prof Dr Ghani-ul-Akram Sabzwari

Pakistan News & Features Services

The Bazm-e-Akram, having emerged as an internationally acclaimed literary forum of library professionals, hosted a farewell reception in the honour of its mentor and role model, Prof Dr Ghani-ul-Akram Sabzwari, in Karachi on February 12.

Prof Dr Ghani-ul-Akram Sabzwari, the Founder President of the Library Promotion Bureau (LPB) and the Founder Editor of the Pakistan Library and Information Science Journal (PLISJ), was scheduled to leave for abroad in a couple of days time.

Prof Dr Nasim Fatima, one of the topmost library scientists of the country and the motivating force behind the Bazm-e-Akram, expressed the hope that the intensity witnessed during the recent months will be maintained with the continued participation of the members.

“The presence of so many new faces in today’s gathering proves the point that the Bazm-e-Akram has been growing and the library scientists were taking greater interest in literary activities,” she observed in her brief speech.

“Let’s keep the momentum alive and let’s remain engaged in such activities which serve the cause of the profession besides promoting Urdu literature. Let’s draw inspiration from each other’s accomplishments to achieve our mutual objective of spreading knowledge,” Prof Dr Nasim Fatima advised.

Prof Dr Ghani-ul-Akram Sabzwari, a former Chairperson of the LIS department at the University of Karachi, complimented Prof Dr Nasim Fatima for having kept the bureau (LPB) and the journal (PLISJ) afloat in the toughest of conditions particularly when he was out of country due to professional reasons for 27 years.

“She has done a tremendous job for the last many years and continues to be our greatest asset. We salute her for the selfless approach she has exhibited while carrying out the assignments with missionary zeal on a voluntary basis,” he acknowledged.

He briefly touched about the history of the LPB, founded in 1966, PLSIJ, started in 1968, reminding the audience how both these entities have remained close to his heart for the past five decades.

Prof Dr Ghani-ul-Akram Sabzwari, one of the founding fathers of Library and Information Science (LIS), announced that he planned to return to Pakistan later this year, hopefully during the month of October.

The function was attended by the senior officials of the Bazm-e-Akram which included its President, Abdul Samad Ansari, Secretary, Dr Nasreen Shagufta, Vice President, Dr Amna Khatoon, and Joint Secretary, Syed Ateeb Ahmed. Syed Abad Ali, Zainuddin Siddiqui, Fozia Bano, Nazia Mukhtar, Wasim Rana, Saba, and Syed Khalid Mahmood were also present on the occasion.

Monday, February 9, 2015

SSUET tributes Bashir Malick

By Abdul Qadir Qureshi
(Pakistan News & Features Services)

Rich compliments were paid to Pakistan’s top architect, writer and senior Aligarhian, Engr Bashir A Malick, at a condolence meeting held at the Bashir A Malick Auditorium of the Sir Syed University of Engineering and Technology (SSUET), Karachi, on February 9.

Born in 1925, Malick had died in Lahore on January 27 at the age of 90 after having spent an active professional and social life spanning over six decades. 

Addressing the condolence meeting, the SSUET Chancellor, Engr Mohammed Adil Usman, described the passing away of Bashir Malick as a great loss to the Aligarhian community. 

“He was our close associate and benefactor who was a loving and caring person, possessing outstanding qualities and his services for the cause of promotion of education were greatly praiseworthy,” the Chancellor noted. 

Engr Adil Usman recalled that after completing his education in hydrology, dams and water power from the top US and Dutch universities, he had served the UN and the World Bank as Chief Technical Adviser besides working as Tarbela Dam’s Project Director. 

“Bashir Malick also wrote a number of books and articles on water distribution system and possible challenges and one of his most important compilation in book form was titled ‘Indus Water Treaty in Retrospect’ which gained great reputation,” he added. 

The Chancellor acknowledged that the late Malick, a member of SSUET’s Board of Governors, had been deeply involved in social works and donated a huge amount for construction of a modern auditorium in this university which has been named after him. Expressing his deep grief over the sad demise of Bashir Malick, the Chancellor prayed to Allah to rest the departed soul in eternal peace. 

Earlier in his remarks, the SSUET Registrar, Engr Syed Abrar Ali, described the late Bashir Malick as an engineer of outstanding reputation and high qualities who distinguished himself with his generous philanthropy. 

“He donated enormously on special education in Lahore’s Sunrise School besides establishing an institution for special children also in Lahore,” the Registrar informed. 

The condolence meeting, in which Fateha was also offered for the departed soul, was attended by General Secretary, Aligarh Muslim University Old Boys Association (AMUOBA), Mukhtar Naqvi, besides many other members of the Association as well as the chairpersons of the SSUET’s various departments.

Tuesday, February 3, 2015

Khawaja Naveed speaks his heart out at Nawabshah Press Club

By Rashid Zia Qureshi
(Pakistan News & Features Services)

Former President Asif Ali Zardari always believed in the politics of reconciliation and it was under this philosophy that no political personality was arrested during his tenure. 

"Heading the present government, Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif too is pursuing the same policy,” Barrister Khawaja Naveed Ahmed, retired judge of the Sindh High Court and former Chairman of the Human Rights Committee of Sindh Bar Council, observed while talking to media at the Nawabshah Press Club. 

Abdul Qadir Qureshi, founder member of the Nawabshah Press Club. Chaudhry Abdul Sattar and Aamir Qazi, who accompanied Khawaja Naveed from Karachi, were also present on the occasion. 

Replying to questions, Khawaja Naveed defended military courts in a way pointing out that judiciary felt insecure in the wake of continued circumstances of terrorism with criminals and terrorists extending threats to honorable judges hearing their cases. 

Observing that under such conditions army courts had become inevitable, he was of the view that although courts do give verdicts in such cases but the fact was that real justice would be from the court of Almighty Allah.

He admitted public opinions about irregularities in the court system and noted that sometimes advantages go against oppressed. 

He told a questioner that reconciliation courts, established for the purpose of dispensing cheaper justice, failed as concerned people were unaware of complications of judicial procedures. However the situation can be made better if retired judges are posted in Reconciliation Courts. He said that menace of falsification has overcome politics due to which common man is not pleased with politicians. 

To another question Khawaja Naveed said that there is not the desired governance in Sindh, as it should have been, therefore what comment he can offer on its performance, adding that Syed Qaim Ali Shah just enjoyed the title of Chief Minister. 

He opined that in many cases an Oath Commissioner seemed more powerful than Chief Minister who can make documents legal with a single stroke of his stamp on a payment of ten rupees. 

"How a government ascribe itself authoritative when it cannot deliver rights of poor grower in shape of due payment from sugar mills,” he said mentioning that in a country where the Governor tenders resignation saying he is week before mafias and land grabbers, then what one can expect of constitution and law. 

Khwaja Naveed told a questioner that Supreme Judicial Council is the best forum for the accountability of judiciary but bad practice appears when this forum is not used. 

He said that law making was necessary for cases whereby a complainant gets court order for FIR registration under section 22A when police refuses to entertain. It is necessary to issue notice to other party as well prior to issuing order under section 22A to frustrate the objective behind registering of fake FIR, he suggested. 

Khawaja Naveed recalled that as Judge of the Sindh High Court he issued orders in 1,400 cases and many of his orders were cited as reference in various cases. He described as deplorable non hearing of cane growers case with regard to payment of quality premium by sugar mills.

Sunday, February 1, 2015

Khurshid Shah to facilitate in resolving construction industry’s problems

By Abdul Qadir Qureshi
(Pakistan News & Features Services)

Syed Khurshid Ahmed Shah, a former Federal Minister and now the Leader of Opposition in the National Assembly, urged the government to provide incentives to the construction industry as it played an important role in the economic development of the country.

He made the observation while talking to a delegation of the Association of Builders & Developers of Pakistan (ABAD), led by its chairman, Junaid Ashraf Taloo, which called on him during his recent visit to Karachi. 

Khurshid Shah vowed to raise the issue of gas, electric and water connections on the floor of the house. The Leader of the Opposition promised to extend full cooperation for meeting the demands of ABAD members. 

The ABAD delegation included Vice Chairman, Mohammad Hanif Memon, Regional Chairman, Mohammad Hassan Bakshi, and members, Owais Thanvi, Rizwan Adhia, Arif Jeewa, Fayyaz Ilyas, Mustafa Thanvi, Anwar OK and Sohail Warind.. 

The ABAD Chairman pointed out that Karachi contributed 67% of revenue to the national exchequer and the construction industry was providing employment to a vast majority of people. 

Junaid Ashraf regretted that due to ban on gas connections to high rises and housing societies, the investment of billions of rupees of builders and allottees had been blocked. 

“Although Sindh is producing 70 % natural gas but the right to get gas connection in high rises and housing societies is being denied,” he said. 

The Vice Chairman, Hanif Memon, stated that moratorium on new gas connections was imposed in 2011 for a period of two years apparently to support LNG business. 

The Regional Chairman, Hassan Bakshi, reckoned that if all pending applications for gas connections of all builders of Karachi, Hyderabad and Sukkur were accommodated, the total requirement of gas will be less than 1 MMCFD. 

On the issues of K-Electric, he said that even under Self Finance Scheme, the builders have to provide a bank guarantee for which they have to deposit 100% cash margin which caused double financial burden on them. He demanded that the bank guarantee should not be more than 10% to 15% of the total amount. He also called for the reduction of tariff for TL connection.