Khyber Medical University, Peshawar has planned to open its campus in Kabul, Afghanistan according to Vice-Chancellor KMU. They intend to facilitate students of Kabul at their doorstep.

Dr. Zia ul Haq, the VC of Khyber Medical University presented this idea in a recent meeting held in Peshawar with a high-ranking delegation of the Consulate General of the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan. The meeting was led by Qari Habibullah, Nusratullah Zia, and Mufti Noorullah. Dr. Zia expressing his concern for the Afghan students explained in the meeting that Pakistan is already providing higher education facilities to thousands of Afghan students in many institutes of the country including KMU. He also said that the Afghan students have to suffer for not having these facilities in their own country and this pain has been felt by all the people of Pakistan, particularly that of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. Talking about the facilities his university is providing, he explained that KMU has been providing them many educational facilities as they have Afghan students not only in MBBS and BDS degrees but also in many other fields like physiotherapy, nursing, allied health, and public health. 

Dr. Zia also talked about the scholarships that they have been providing to Afghan students to facilitate them to manage the expense of their education. The government of Pakistan has not only reserved seats for these students but there are also scholarships like Allama Iqbal Scholarship. He explained that the doors of his university are always open to the students from Afghanistan and that they are also working on opening KMU’s international campus in Kabul to provide them with education opportunities in Pakistan and their own country. The meeting was also attended by Dean Basic Medical Sciences and Coordinator Centralized Admission Committee Prof. Dr. Jawad Ahmed, Deputy Registrar Establishment Inamullah Wazir, Director Admission Muhammad Arshad Khan, Coordinator to Vice-Chancellor KMU Muhammad Tayyab, and the representatives of Afghan students. 

Dr. Zia recommended that the delegation of the Islamic emirate should also urge the Afghan Ministry of foreign affairs to talk to the Ministry of foreign affairs of Pakistan about the implementation of the project. The initial approval has already been taken from the KMU syndicate and the Higher Education Commission, Islamabad.  

During the meeting, Mufti Noorullah presented his gratitude for the opportunities Pakistan has provided to the Afghan students. He said that he is grateful to the Government and the people of Pakistan for standing by Afghan students in every difficult situation. He also said that Pakistan has always provided them equal opportunities for education and employment. These services are an example for other Muslim countries, he explained. 

Dr. Zia also promised the delegation that he will issue a letter to Secretary Health Khyber Pakhtunkhwa to reduce the fees of Afghan students. The issue of female hostels in the area was also discussed in the meeting. 

The government sounds concerned about the students of Afghanistan whereas some Pakistani students are not happy with the step. They say that they should facilitate their own students first before moving on to others. On the other hand, some say it is a good step. What do you think about it?

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Ayesha Areej is a staff writer at The Academia Magazine

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