ISLAMABAD: Vice chancellors and rectors of a large number of universities on Sunday demanded that the new government allocate 4pc of the GDP for education with at least 1pc for higher education to increase access to university education.

This demand was made during the 22nd Vice Chancellor’s Committee meeting which was held in a hotel with Prof Dr Masoom Yasinzai in the chair.

The vice chancellors said almost all major parties have pledged in their manifestos to increase the education budget. “This is a good announcement but we want implementation,” Dr Yasinzai said.

Talking to Dawn after the meeting, he said there is a need for increasing the education budget and bringing improvements in the sector.

The meeting was also attended by Higher Education Commission (HEC) Chairman Dr Tariq Banuri who assured participants of his support in improving the country’s higher education sector.

Mr Banuri also underlined his vision for bringing improvement.

The vice chairmen resolved to work together with the HEC for the promotion of higher education.

The HEC chairman said the National Academy of Higher Education set up by the University Grant Commission will also be made operational once again to organise various courses and conduct trainings for university faculty.

An 11-point resolution was also passed during the meeting which said: “Students are the primary stakeholders for higher education and we all must protect the right to quality education for all students. While, good quality faculty is essential for imparting quality education, and helping our students compete at global level. Efforts are needed to ensure availability of quality faculty for public and private sector universities”.

“It also called for more responsible autonomous universities with monitorable, reportable and verifiable system of governance is essential. We demand that there should be no external interference in university affairs,” the resolution said.

Published in Dawn, July 9th, 2018