Chairman Higher Education Commission (HEC) Pakistan Prof Dr Mukhtar Ahmad has said that BPS/TTS system would not be able to run together. He announced that HEC was working to introduce University Pay Scale, a uniform system for appointment of teachers at the universities.

He was addressing the seminar on ‘The Impacts of HEC’s Policies on the Universities’ Faculty’ organized by Punjab University (PU) Academic Staff Association at Al Raazi Hall. On this occasion, FAPUASA Punjab and PUASA President Prof Dr Muhammad Azhar Naeem, Secretary ASA Dr Amjad Abbas Khan Magsi and a large number of teachers from various departments were present.

While addressing on occasion Dr Mukhtar Ahmed expressed that deliberations in this regard were being made and the HEC would benefit from the suggestions sent by PUASA in this regard. He said that after preparing the initial draft of the University Pay Scale, stakeholders would be involved to finalize the policy and incorporate their suggestions.

He said that HEC would set new KPIs for the performance and appointment of teachers to improve the quality of education. He said that there were some faults in the system of implementation of undergraduate policy. He said that new undergraduate and PhD policies were being changed and stakeholders were being consulted in this regard. The government was to direct the universities to deposit their money to the State Bank and due to this policy, if implemented, the universities would face serious financial issues.

In his address, Dr Mukhtar Ahmed said that he had discussed the matter with the IMF delegation and the IMF had also supported non-lapsable fund for the universities. However, some departments of the federal government wanted to deliberately implement a policy which was totally unacceptable for universities and would cause serious damage to the financial affairs of higher learning institutions.

He said that from January 2023, the universities would have to keep their money in the State Bank and they will receive the money after sending the details of expenses to the State Bank and after June 30, the money left in the account of the universities will go to the government and this policy was not feasible for the universities in any case. He said that the quality of education in affiliated colleges was very poor where there is no monitoring system just for the sake of money.

Dr Mukhtar Ahmad said that ad-hocism was damaging the system of the universities and until the governance issues were addressed, the universities could not move forward. He termed turning BA/BSc into associate degree a big mistake.

Dr Azhar Naeem said that there will be no compromise on the autonomy of educational institutions. He also presented the Charter of Demand in his address. Dr Amjad Magsi appreciated the chairman for taking the stakeholders into confidence in the development of policies. He said that PUASA was working to solve the problems of teachers. Later, there was a question-answer session.

Related: Chairman HEC calls on CM Punjab

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Arsalan Haider is a reporter at Academia Mag and has worked with leading national dailies and news channels. He tweets @arsalanhaider14

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