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EDUCATION WATCH

February 02, 2018

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A Member of the joint action committee of Private Schools Association addresses a press conference at the National Press Club on Thursday. — Online
A Member of the joint action committee of Private Schools Association addresses a press conference at the National Press Club on Thursday. — Online

Schools want time to leave Cantt areas

The military cantonment’s board’s recent decision of cancelling the leases of private schools and asking them to move out from cantonment areas has caused unrest among school operators.

The Military Estate Office had last month cancelled the lease of 15 schools and issued them notices for moving out whereas the Rawalpindi Cantonment Board (RCB) also wants all private schools to move out of its jurisdiction in light of a Supreme Court judgement.

Addressing a press conference at the National Press Club on Thursday, representatives of a joint action committee headed by Abrar Ahmed Khan said the cantonment boards in Rawalpindi, Lahore and Karachi wanted to move out all private schools from their jurisdictions in light of the SC judgement.

Mr Abrar said private schools are playing a major role in the country’s education sector and that asking them to move from cantonment areas will be a great injustice. He said that in Oct last year, SC had in the case between two parties ruled that there should no commercial activity in residential areas.

“We are requesting SC to make us a party in the case,” he said.

Another representative, Naseem Malik said the Rawalpindi cantonment cancelled the leases of 15 schools and that there are apprehensions that all 1,200 schools in the garrison city’s Cantt area will be asked to move out next. The representatives of private schools requested the chief justice, prime minister and other authorities to intervene in the matter.

Talking to Dawn, he said the SC order mentions that all commercial buildings and schools in residential areas will be moved out gradually.

Talking to Dawn, an RCB official said that according to the SC decision and a Senate committee’s recommendation, all non-conforming use of residential properties are to be removed gradually. “We have been issuing notices since 2011,” the officer said, adding that a survey is being conducted to determine the exact number of residential properties being used for commercial purposes.

NUST conducts Model UN conference

UNDP Country Director Naoko Takasu is being presented a shield. — Dawn
UNDP Country Director Naoko Takasu is being presented a shield. — Dawn

NUST conducted a model United Nations’ conference at the main campus between Jan 26 and 29.

The opening ceremony was attended by UNDP Country Director Naoko Takasu as well as NUST Pro-Rector (academics) Dr Asif Raza, and Principal/Dean of NUST Business School Dr Naukhez Sarwar.

The discussion topics this year included current scenarios and future projections regarding issues such as inequality and socially responsible initiatives for the world.

As many as 14 committees were simulated, including the Security Council (UNSC), the Disarmament and International Security Committee, the Social, Humanitarian and Cultural Committee and the United Nations Development Program along with specialized and newer simulations such as Press Corp. and others.

The conference also featured a Diplomatic Meet, where reputed professionals from various walks of life attended the conference as part of a Delegate-Diplomat interaction session. During the course of the conference, several social events were held, including “Global Highway”, a carnival and musical evening.

Published in Dawn, February 2nd, 2018