Sunday, May 31, 2015

Tale of missing forms in Elections 2013

By Rashid Zia Qureshi
(Pakistan News & Features Services)

Form 15 were mysteriously found missing from 1298 electoral bags of of 610 polling stations of District Shaheed Benazirabad.

According to informed sources, on the directive of Judicial Commission bags of election 2013 for two national and five provincial assembly seats were opened under the supervision of District and Sessions Judge, Mushtaque Ahmed Kalhoro. 

It was revealed that Form 15 were not present in hundreds of bags and the sources added that for NA-213 and NA-214 and PS-24, 25, 26, 27, 28 Form-15 were missing in 551 out of 1,298 bags. 

The record showed that out of 316 bags of NA-213 Form 15 was missing in 107 bags while out of 333 bags of NA-214 there was no Form 15 in 148 bags. It was disclosed that in PS-24, 76 bags in PS-25, 48 bags, in PS-26, 56 bags, in PS-27, 64 bags and in PS-28 52 bags were found without Form 15. 

The sources informed that a comprehensive report with regard to examination of these bags has been sent to the Registrar of the Sindh High Court.

Friday, May 29, 2015

KPT signs MoU with Chinese department

By Abdul Qadir Qureshi
(Pakistan News & Features Services)

A six-member delegation of the Guangdong Province, China, led by Liu Zhigeng, Vice Governor, Guangdong Province, visited the Karachi Port Trust (KPT) for signing a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) for strengthening of port and shipping connectivity and for establishing cooperation between Guangdong Provincial Transportation Department and the KPT.

The MoU was signed by the Chairman KPT, Vice Admiral Shafqat Jawed, and the Director General, Department of Transport Guangdong Province, China, Zeng Zhaogeng. 

The MoU acknowledged the existing friendly relations between Pakistan and China and pledged the desire of strengthening the existing friendly relations through cooperative activities at ports in Guangdong Province and Karachi Port which are transportation hubs of the two countries. 

The MoU envisaged promoting cooperation in port and shipping logistics, strengthening communications and establishing closer ties between the two countries. 

Among others, the ceremony was attended by the Minister for Ports and Shipping, Senator Kamran Michael, and other top officials of the Ministry of Ports and Shipping and the KPT besides the members of visiting delegation. 

During the ceremony it was informed that both the KPT and the Guangdong Province ports have mutually agreed to cooperate in the field of freight and logistics, especially in port and shipping industry, thus serving the import, export and transhipment of goods from Guangdong province. 

They agreed on jointly studying policies for promoting the development in freight and logistics of both the signing parties for strengthening freight and logistics information connectivity for facilitating and accelerating customs clearance for the reduction of companies’ logistics cost. 

It was also agreed that both the parties will boost all round cooperation in investment and operation by the port logistics of their respective countries. With regards to improving professional and management skills of the managers of the port and shipping industry, it was agreed to carry out professional education and training in the field of port and shipping and logistics. 

Provision has been kept for further consultations on cooperation and other issues of common concern as both the parties have endeavored to engage the administrative authorities and industry associations of the respective two countries for maintaining constant contact and for sending their representatives to visit each other for communication advancement. 

The signatory countries undertook to strengthen friendly relations and cooperation in port logistics which will eventually promote extensive communication and cooperation in the economy of the districts where the ports are located.

SSUET Academic Council meets

By Abdul Qadir Qureshi
(Pakistan News & Features Services)

The Academic Council of Sir Syed University of Engineering and Technology (SSUET), which met under the chairmanship of the Vice-Chancellor, Prof Dr Jawaid H. Rizvi, approved the recommendations made by the Joint Board of Faculties and Board of Advance Studies and Research.

The boards had their meetings earlier to formulate their recommendations for consideration by the Academic Council. The recommendations mainly included regarding courses of studies, semester and admission rules for the purpose of include in the prospectus for the academic year 2016. 

These recommendations will now be put up before the Board of Governors which is scheduled to meet sometime next month. The BoG will also consider the recommendations of SSUET’s Finance and Planning Committee which met recently to discuss the university budget proposals for 2015-16. 

It may be mentioned here that the SSUET Board of Governors comprises of eminent personalities like Dr Abdul Qadeer Khan, Lt Gen (Rtd) Moinuddin Haider, Prof Dr Ata-ur-Rehman, Justice Sadiq Hussain Bhatti, President KCCI, Secretary Education and others.

Mirpurkhas teachers found engaged in cattle business

By Abdul Qadir Qureshi 
(Pakistan News & Features Services) 

As a part of the drive to streamline matters and put things in order, the Taluka Education Officer, Jeewan Mansha, conducted raid at different schools of Mirpurkhas in order to trace the teachers absenting from duty. 

It was astonishing that the teachers bound to attend schools were found in cattle den engaged in their own businesses. 

On the special instructions of the Secretary Education Sindh, the Taluka Education Officer Primary (Male), paid surprise visits of different schools and found teachers absent from duty. 

Interestingly the absenting teachers were caught red handed doing cattle business but they managed to flee from the scene, leaving behind their cattle. They were issued show cause notices.

SANA condole Abdul Wahid Arriser’s death

By Abdul Qadir Qureshi
(Pakistan News & Features Services)

The Sindhi Association of North America (SANA) held a condolence meeting for the eminent intellectual Abdul Wahid Arriser, in Houston, USA, which was largely attended by Sindhi community leaders. 

The President SANA, Jamil Daudi, while addressing the condolence gathering paid rich tribute to Abdul Wahid Arriser, noting that he was a role model in his own right and persons like him were born after decades. 

The General Secretary, SANA, Noorunisa Ghanghro, also addressed the gathering and paid tribute to the deceased intellectual, observing that he will be remembered in the history of Sindh for years to come.

Wednesday, May 27, 2015

No fee hike at SSUET

By Abdul Qadir Qureshi
(Pakistan News & Features Services)

The Sir Syed University of Engineering & Technology (SSUET), Karachi, has denied any recent hike in academic fees. “A news item and protest regarding fees hikes are baseless and unjustified as it may be the outcome of misunderstanding,” a SSUET spokesman clarified. 

“The SSUET has always given top priority to their students’ education and as per tradition offers a huge amount to talented and deserving students in terms of scholarship and financial assistance to help them complete their studies without any financial constraints,” he added. 

The students have been advised to focus on their studies and not to waste their valuable time in useless and unfruitful activities.

Sunday, May 24, 2015

FRHD bring to light issues of street children

By Abdul Qadir Qureshi
(Pakistan News & Features Services)

A consultative dialogue meeting with street children was organized by the Foundation for Research & Human Development (FRHD) at Beach Park, Clifton, Karachi, as a part of the Global Action Week: Education for All programme.

A group of 25 street children, representatives of civil society, school children and teachers participated in the event. The aim of meeting was to urge the state took serious measures to provide shelter, health and education them accordingly existing domestic laws. 

The literacy rates among children working and living on the streets is very low during the consultative dialogue street children group shared that poverty, corporal punishment and forced begging were some of the major reasons children working on the streets have dropped out of school. 

The majority of vulnerable children disclosed that they had left school because of their family's economic status. Incidences of corporal punishment, violent behavior of peers and others also played their part in expediting dropouts from schools. 

Upon inquiry, they stated that neither did they want to enroll in school nor would their families ever let them, given the fact that they believed earning on the streets trumped educating a child. The FRHD estimates 1.5 million children on the streets of Pakistan's major cities with poverty, unemployment and other economic issues and floods of 2010 and 2011 having contributed increasing number of street children in the country. 

“A study on street children revealed that 56.5% of the children interviewed in Multan, 82.2% in Karachi, 80.5% in Hyderabad and 83.3% in Sukkur were forced to move on to the streets after the 2010 and 2011 floods. According to UNODC, 72% of the working children do not have contact with their families and 10% have no knowledge of their families,” Nazra Jahan, Executive Director, FRHD, revealed. 

She reminded that the laws prevailing to address the issues, the Sindh Children Act 1955, make the state responsible for providing custody and protection to children whilst also punishing parents and guardians who will fully neglects and abuse children. 

“The Sindh Child Protection Authority Act 2011 entailed specific provisions for child protection in the province of Sindh under the authority formed. It shall have powers to coordinate, monitor, support and establish mechanisms for all child protection issues in the province. The Sindh Right of Children to Free & Compulsory Education Act 2013 protected the right to education of every child aged 5 to 16 years,” Nazra Jahan added. 

The FRHD official felt that instead of overburdening in the sense of introducing legislation, the state should take measures to implement the existing laws for protecting the human rights, it’s a very essential obligation. 

The Programme officer Devcon, Shafiq Kandro, observed that the street children in Pakistan form a very young age group, some being no older than four years of age, and are engaged in menial jobs that do not require vocational training. 

“Moreover, these jobs offer no opportunities for advancement or improved lifestyles in the future. Many survive by prostituting themselves, stealing or smuggling and are vulnerable to a number of diseases including STDs and health ailments that are a direct result of their occupations and unsanitary conditions of workplaces,” she concluded.

Thursday, May 21, 2015

Mirpurkhas Mango Festival aimed at boosting small growers

By Abdul Qadir Qureshi
(Pakistan News & Features Services)

Sindh Chief Minister, Syed Qaim Ali Shah, would distribute prizes at the concluding ceremony of three-day Golden Jubilee Mango Festival being organized at Mirpurkhas on June 6. 

Provincial Minister for Law and Parliamentary Affairs, Dr Sikandar Mendhro, will also attend the Mango Festival which will be inaugurated by Senior Provincial Minister for Education, Nisar Ahmed Khuhro, on June 4. 

This was announced by Deputy Commissioner, Mirpurkhas, Rasheed Ahmed Zardari, after having presided over a meeting to review the festival arrangements held on May 21. He revealed that the Mango Festival would be held at Shaheed Benazir Bhutto Exhibition Hall (Fruit Farm) while the concluding ceremony has been scheduled at the auditorium of State Life Building. 

According to him, the festival is being held for the betterment of small growers and urged the growers to attend the even in large numbers. 

The Deputy Commissioner urged the Festival Management Committee to motivate small growers to set up their stalls at the festival to promote better environment, style and attraction. He said that apart from Mirpurkhas, the growers belonging to other district including Matiari, Hyderabad, Tando Allahyar and Nawabshah would also be invited to set up mango stall here. 

The meeting was attended, among others, by Addl DC-1 Muhammad Usman Mehsood, Chairman Mango Management Committee Mango Festival Haji Umer Bughio, Deputy Director Agriculture Yar Muhammad Khaskheli, members Mansoor Chhema, Choudhry Ehsanul Haque, Fazal Illahi Memon, Mir Zafarullah Talpur, Karim, AC: Shujabad Abdul Hafeez Laghari, Faukh Anwar Gondal and others.

Mirpurkhas to host Mango Festival

By Abdul Qadir Qureshi
(Pakistan News & Features Services)

Deputy Commissioner, Mirpurkhas, Rasheed Ahmed Zardari, has vowed to make the upcoming Golden Jubilee Mango Festival a successful event to attract the exporters side by side with the small growers. 

"The festival would help in developing the mango farms on modern lines with increased mango exports to other countries,” he said while chairing a meeting of the Family Musical Programme Sub-Committee formed in connection with Mango Festival to be held at Mirpurkhas from June 4 to 6.

Rasheed Zardari remarked that mangoes of Mirpurkhas are an iconic symbol of this area and famous for their taste and variety not only in Pakistan country but in many world countries. He called upon the district administration and citizens to play their role in introducing the symbolic mangoes of Mirpurkhas. 

He described the Family Musical Show an important part of the Mango Festival and said all of them have to play their respective roles for its success. He informed that the Musical Show and the Family Festival would be organized at Police ground in order to provide entertainment for children and woman folk. 

He stressed that strict security arrangements would be made at the Police ground during Mango Festival and Rangers would be deployed alongwith police for the purpose. 

The Deputy Commissioner advised the Secretary of the Mirpurkhas Arts Council, Raees Ahmed Khan, to keep the museum open on the occasion in order to provide entertainment and create an awareness among more and more people about the cultural heritage. He also directed to make arrangements for floats to manifest the importance of Mango Festival. 

On the occasion Assistant Commissioner Taluka Shujabad and in-charge Family Musical Show, Abdul Hafeez Laghari briefed the meeting and said that famous singer and comedian Ahmed Mughal, singer Deeba Sahar, Marul Group, Shafi Faqeer, Mistri Jogi, Khushboo Laghari, Liaquat Faqeer and local famous singers would perform at the Family Musical Show. 

The meeting was attended by Mango Festival Sub-Committees members Karim Memon, Mansoor Cheema, Raees Ahmed Khan, S A Khan, Mirza Masroor Baig, Aftab Qureshi, Additional Deputy Commissioner-1 Usman Mehsood, Assistant Commissioner and Chief Municipal Officer Arshad Qayoom Barki, AC Shujabad Abdul Hafeez Laghari, Jamil Ahmed Khan, Azhar Abbas, Furqan Ali, Choudhry Rafique Aamir and others.

Tuesday, May 19, 2015

SSUET confers first Ph D degree to Dr Rabia Enam

By Abdul Qadir Qureshi
(Pakistan News & Features Services)

With the Sir Syed University of Engineering and Technology (SSUET), Karachi, making fast strides in the fields of engineering education, achieved another milestone with Assistant Professor of Computer Engineering Department, Dr Rabia N, Enam, having become the first lady to be conferred with PhD degree in Computer Engineering from this institution. 

She has received Ph D degree for her thesis on ‘Energy Efficient adaptive data aggregation in cluster based wireless sensor networks.’ 

Appreciating the efforts of the institution, Chancellor SSUET, Engr. Mohammad Adil Usman, observed that the SSUET has made concerted efforts in the field of engineering education and had so far produced over 13,000 graduates, capable to meet the demand of modern world. 

“The engineers from this university today hold responsible positions in reputed national, multinational organizations both within Pakistan and abroad,” he pointed out. 

He described the SSUET as a progressive institution that looked forward to meet the requirements of technical education and practices. “For this purpose, the curriculum of engineering is regularly reviewed, upgraded and improved. Besides new disciplines periodically added,” he highlighted. 

The Chancellor advised the SSUET graduates to always pursue a positive mode and think in terms of solutions. Each and every problem should be taken as a challenge and they must strive for solution in real earnest with confidence and determination. 

“Our country is going through a critical phase, having a list of challenges and we have great expectations from our young engineers that they would rise to the occasion and cope with challenges ahead,” Engr Adil Usman hoped. 

Recalling the achievements of SSUET, the Vice Chancellor, Prof Dr Syed Jawaid H Rizvi, said that the Sir Syed University of Engineering & Technology was established with a view to imparting the youth with most modern knowledge in engineering and technology through the best available human and material resources and assigns a high priority to tolerance, human values, progress, innovative ideas and research in pursuit to bring a breakthrough in technology. 

He informed that the university is pioneer in introducing Biomedical Engineering Department and Biomedical Engineers turned out by SSUET are playing a significant role in the maintenance of the equipment in the hospitals here and abroad. 

He exhorted the students to attain intellectual gain as this will always help them in future life. “The university was set up with a well planned scheme to synchronize with demand of engineers in the country,” he added. 

He said that the Sir Syed University started with the annual budget of Rs 17.22 million in 1994 which touched the figure of Rs 978.81 million in 2014-15. Pointing out that admissions in SSUET are offered purely on merit, he said this year 4990 applications were received for admission against 1700 seats. 

The university offers scholarships and financial assistance to needy students and staff members on merit basis and in this regard Rs 40 million allocated for scholarships and financial assistance to the students. The university provides ample budget to all departments to ensure that there should be no compromise over quality and performance of the labs. 

The university’s library has 100,000 books and subscribes a large number of national and international journals and magazines The enrollment in the university has already crossed 21000 while over 13000 graduates had passed out since 1998.

Wednesday, May 13, 2015

AIT organize engineering & IT fair

By Abdul Qadir Qureshi
(Pakistan News & Features Services)

The Aligarh Institute of Technology (AIT), Karachi, organized an impressive 8th Engineering & IT Fair 2015 showcasing over 300 innovative projects, designed and produced by its students.

The fair, inaugurated by the Chancellor of the Sir Syed University of Engineering & Technology (SSUET), Engr. Mohammad Adil Usman, was largely attended by the students, faculty members, corporate professionals and dignitaries. 

Speaking on the occasion, Chancellor Adil Usman observed that engineering & IT fairs reflected the result of students’ capacity, skills and experience in tangible form. 

“The event has shown how creatively charged students successfully transformed their innovative ideas and concepts into cost-effective commercially viable products,” he complimented. 

He later went round the Fair and appreciated the projects on display and highly appreciated the efforts of the students for producing best results in their respective fields of studies and applying practical use of their knowledge in a true sense. 

He urged upon the students to continuously keep themselves updated with the latest information and knowledge in the area of learning so as to be able to compete in the market and industry. 

The Chancellor described the projects on display as innovative and motivational. Technical education provides a boost to economic advancement and plays a significant role in the national human resource development creating skilled manpower, enhancing industrial productivity and improving the quality of life. 

Among others, Mukhtar Ahmed Naqvi, General Secretary, AMUOBA, Shajar Ali Hashmi, Convenor AIT, Masood Alam, Zafar Hasnain and Prof. Dr. Hilal Qureshi were also present on the occasion.