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LAHORE: The Punjab Higher Education Department (HED) has directed the University of Engineering and Technology (UET) to remove its registrar and controller of examination as an inquiry committee found their appointment illegal.

A directive issued on March 7 to the UET vice chancellor by the HED available with Dawn requires him to denotify the illegal appointments of Muhammad Asif (registrar) and Muhammad Zargham Nusrat (controller of examination) within 15 days.

“In case of non-compliance, a complete reference against the vice chancellor shall be forwarded to worthy chancellor for his consideration and further necessary action as per law,” the directive adds.

The HED has constituted a three-member inquiry committee to investigate the alleged illegal appointments of the registrar and others pointed out in the complaints submitted to NAB Lahore, Anti-Corruption Establishment [Punjab] and the office of secretary HED. A writ petition challenging the appointments was also submitted to Lahore High Court by UET retired lab supervisor Ghulam Hussain.

Panel formed by higher education dept finds appointments illegal

The committee includes HED Additional Secretary (Academics) Zeeshan Javaid as convener, Deputy Secretary (Est. Male) Faheem Ahmad Khan and Section Officer Syed Hassan Abbas Akhtar as members.

The committee also directed the VC and resident auditor to work out all cases of appointments made on the basis of private sector experience within one month and to place them before the syndicate for their treatment as per law under intimation to the department. The VC will have to ensure that the cases are reviewed by the syndicate keeping in view the overall context of rules and procedures.

It further directed the VC to initiate disciplinary action against those found responsible for violation of UET statutes and without having determined the equivalence of private experience as required.

The committee directed the VC to curtail the number of deputy registrars appointed over and above the sanctioned posts through Selection Board of 2009. Appointment, selection or promotion can only be made against a certain vacant post for which salary is to be paid.

The VC was directed to place the matter before the syndicate for decision as per applicable laws, rules and policies against allegations. The VC was directed to denotify the above-mentioned irregular appointments within 15 days.

UET VC Prof Dr Aziz Akbar told Dawn that he had called meeting of the university syndicate on March 18 and it would decide about the appointments in-question.

He said the appointments were made after holding selection board and the syndicate had already approved these appointments.

He said he was holding the syndicate meeting to review the appointments and intervention of the HED in university matter was like challenging the sovereignty of the institution.

Published in Dawn, March 12th, 2019