Dr Banuri stresses for protection of students’ rights

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APP01-17 ISLAMABAD: July 17 – Dr. Tariq Banuri, Chairman Higher Education Commission addressing a press conference at Commission Secretariat. APP photo by Saeed-ul-Mulk

ISLAMABAD, Jul 17 (APP):Chairman Higher Education Commission (HEC) Dr Tariq Bnauri Tuesday said that the rights of students must be protected, as they are the primary stakeholders of higher education sector.

Addressing a press conference here, he emphasized on steps to protect student rights in order to cater to the needs of next generations and enable students to become a successful citizen.

He maintained that a number of measures have to be taken in this regard e.g. ensuring quality of education and research, capacity building of faculty and imparting practical knowledge to students.

He underlined that the faculty capacity building programmes need a review for further improvement. Training programmes are being planned for university leadership as well as administration so that issues like governance, financial management, human resource development, and additional resource generation can be efficiently addressed, he added.

Terming quality of education and research a fundamental goal, he said, vice chancellors should ensure students right to quality education wherein they may have interaction opportunities, he added.

“It must be ensured that students are not cheated or defrauded in any way,” he emphasized. He explained that substandard and low quality academic programmes initiated by universities in violation of HEC guidelines are also tantamount to cheating students.

He said the institutions issuing fake degrees are not only endangering the students future but also committing injustice to the society. “Exploiting education invites strong regulatory action,” he clarified, as HEC gives minimum standards which universities must abide by.

The Chairman stressed the importance of Information Technology to bring efficiency in teaching, research, university governance and administrative as well as financial affairs.

He said that a transparent system is to be evolved to consolidate educational database, adding that the universities financial management systems need to be made transparent. He said that deliberations are underway on developing a job portal to facilitate qualified students in securing jobs.

Quality of education has a strong link with economic uplift, he observed. He said HEC will set a pathway to increase universities autonomy. Only those universities which ensure transparency in their operations, show capability of taking independent decisions, and ensure financial transparency will be given autonomy, he revealed.

He hinted at a social contract with the government to end interference in universities affairs. “Universities will eventually be made autonomous for the country’s real development,” he stated.

He said the universities would be given financial autonomy with the regular process of accountability to make their financial process clean and transparent.

He said the universities would have to meet the criteria of HEC to get autonomy as without meeting it the universities would not be given autonomy.