The administration of the NCS University System Department of Health Sciences Peshawar has been facing backlash and non-stop criticism from social media users after a video of a musical show reportedly hosted by the institute emerged on social media.

The viral video shows a female singer dancing and singing on the stage while a crowd of students was gathered to enjoy her performance. However, the criticism came fast and furious when a journalist from Peshawar shared the video on social media titled ‘Peshawar”. Later it emerged that the video was from a musical event hosted by the NCS-University System Department of Health Sciences Peshawar affiliated with the Khyber Medical University (KMU).

A majority of social media users were of the view that such events were against their cultural values and norms. The varsity administration should tender a public apology. Some of them opined that musical events inspired by western style should not be allowed in educational institutions. They were demanding the authorities concerned take immediate action against the university’s management.

On the other hand, the director of NCS University in his video statement said that a musical concert was organized at the end of the Hunar Meela where a foreign singer appeared in a dress against the moral values and customs of Pakistan. He further stated the participation of a foreign singer was also a surprise for the officials of the institute.

The event organizing company had not taken prior permission and nothing about this was disclosed or shared with the management. The director apologized for the incident and said that the event was completely hosted and organized by a foreign organization and the university just provided the venue for the event.

At the same time, Provincial Minister for Higher Education Department (HED) Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Kamran Bangash told the reporters that a show cause notice has been issued to the university. University has been directed to submit the response within three days. In case of failing to respond to the notice, the affiliation of the institution may also be terminated.

The KMU Registrar Prof Dr Muhammad Saleem Gandapur in a letter to the director of the NCS University System said; “conducting such activities with the logo and name of the KMU on the stage is quite objectionable. All educational institutes are bound to maintain ethical and moral standards and sanctity of the institute during all curricular and co-curricular activities”

The registrar directed the officials concerned with the NCS-University to explain their position within three days otherwise strict disciplinary action will be taken against the institute which can also result in de-affiliation.

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Arshad Yousafzai is a Karachi-based journalist covering Education and Human Rights. He can be reached on Twitter @Arshadyousafzay

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