PESHAWAR: The University of Peshawar and the poster boy of the Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf were caught off-guard when youths affiliated with an opposition political party held a protest against the make-up test held for the old student-turned-politician.
Pakhtun Student Federation raised the alarm when Murad Saeed, an MNA of the ruling Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf, appeared for two papers in which he was marked absent during a semester examination in 2009.
Murad Saeed, who was a student of BS programme at the Environmental Science department of the University of Peshawar between 2005 and 2009, skipped the last two papers and was marked absent as his mother got injured during a military offensive in 2009, officials at the UoP said.
Although short of nine credit hours, the University of Peshawar arranged a make-up test for the young MNA as he was found to be absent in two papers and results of one paper, Ecology, was compiled recently in which he got 60 marks.
UoP VC forms panel to probe if Murad Saeed’s exam held in haste or in violation of rules
While the UoP helped its MNA student by making up for his lost time by holding an examination for the two papers on the same day, hue and cry about this violation of BS four-year Programme rules allegedly favouring the young MNA stirred up protest on campus.
If any student missed mid/final term for some genuine reason, the University of Peshawar Regulation for Semester System 2010 Section (18-II) about the make-up examination says the make-up examination shall be conducted within two weeks of the end of the semester.
The UoP not only held the make-up test after five long years but it also looked the other way about the 75 per cent attendance required for a semester.
An official of the UoP himself said 131 credit hours were needed per semester but Mr. Murad Saeed was short of 9 credit hours. He justified his absence saying an application lying with the university was a proof that his mother was injured in military offensive in Swat so he was absent.
The vice chancellor of tge University of Peshawar stopped its staff from declaring the results of the two paper for which the MNA appeared on Wednesday (March 4) after fears of ‘malpractice’ were raised by some quarters, said an official, who could not name those quarters.
The vice chancellor has set up a committee to probe if the make-up test was held in haste or in violation of BS programme Regulation.
The committee would also look into whether the test was conducted in a fair manner, said an official.
Chairperson of the UoP Environmental Science Dr Shahida Zakir apologised saying she could not talk about the matter as an inquiry committee was set up on the issue.
Presented as a youthful face of PTI, elected MNA from Swat, and himself takes pride in being a fiery debater. He had been appearing as outspoken participant on talk shows on TV channels however, he came with unclear and rather confusing explanation to the recent issue relating to his conduct in academic matter.
Mr Murad Saeed who had been showing around a DMC without sign of the authorised body shows he has passed the two subjects namely Introduction to the Environmental Science and GIS with 60 and 54 marks respectively.
However, he agreed to appear in the make-up test to get a compiled final results which he had been requesting for sometimes, according to his statement, on request of the university.
Murad Saeed in a long statement termed fight between two teachers of the department which had delayed his results.
Mr Murad Saeed claims to have appeared for the make-up test to resolve the fight between the teachers and end this matter once and for all on request of the university.
Interestingly Mr Murad seems to think he has done a favour to the UoP by agreeing to appear in the make-up test.
“In January 2015, he (Murad Saeed) was approached by the Peshawar University to re-appear in the two papers because that would help end an ongoing fight between the two teachers. He was told that because he (Murad Saeed) was an exceptional student and outstanding in studies, he would pass the examination in one go,” said a statement issued by the MNA.
A senior teacher of the UoP said the university was very particular about attendance or credit hours of students in semester system and therefore, he was amazed at why the young MNA was allowed to appear for two papers without ensuring he attended classes.
He also said Murad Saeed was eligible to appear in a make-up test or reappear in examination till 2011.
“He was surprised how the UoP could allow him to sit a make-up test. Who would make up for the lost time of last five years during which the young politician was busy taking part in general elections and his party activities?”
Published in Dawn, March 6th, 2015