SHIKARPUR: Emplo­yees, inclu­d­ing faculty, of the newly established Sha­ikh Ayaz University, Shikar­pur, on Tuesday decided to intensify their pro­test aga­inst non-payment of salaries for three months.

Speaking to local repor­ters during a token strike, con­ti­nuing for several weeks, the faculty and administrative staff said they were going to start a boycott of their duties on Wednesday and continue with it till their salaries and dues were released.

They appealed to the Sindh Government to rele­ase the allocated amount of Rs50 million to the univer­sity administration in order to enable it to overcome the financial crunch.

The university was established in December 2018 with the aim of providing higher education facility to the students belonging to the remote areas of Shikarpur district as well as parts of Balochistan bordering Sindh.

‘Lands for departments and hostel not handed over to the university administration due to remaining legal formalities, unpaid amount of cost’

It was supposed to receive funds from the provincial government and an allocation of Rs50m had been made in the current budget. However, the process of recruitment and completion of essential infrastructure to make it a fully fledged university has hit snags due to non-release of funds.

Unavailability of necessary funds has also hindered the procedure of acquiring the land earmarked for the university while construction works to complete the infrastructure for acade­mic activities had to be stopped half way.

A batch of 250 students has already been enrolled and classes have been star­ted in the under-construction class­rooms and departments.

Vice Chancellor Nisar Ahmed Siddiqui and a smaller than required faculty, along with the understaffed administration, have been managing the affairs of the university while continuing efforts to get the funds released, according to Mir Mohammed Mahar, the deputy registrar.

The university offers education in different disciplines of science, comm­erce and arts faculties and has admit­ted students as per its capacity.

Regarding the land issue, he revea­led that the land proposed for the construction of departments, adminis­trative block, students’ hostel etc was not yet formally allotted to the uni­versity so far. “Some legal forma­lities are to be completed and certain pay­ments are yet to be made,” he elaborated.

Commenting on the unrest preva­iling among the faculty and employees of the university, Mr Mahar admitted that the institution was unable to pay salaries of confirmed employees. “The administration is not even in a position to meet the university’s day-to-day expenses now,” he added.

Besides, he said, the matter of the university’s recognition by the Higher Education Commission (HEC) was pending, he said.

Mr Mahar said that the chief minister had been requested to look into the issue of the release of Rs50m funds in the interest of education as well as the university’s students and employees. “This will enable the admin­istration to run the university’s financial affairs until the institution starts getting a regular budget,” he said.

The CM had also been requested to constitute a finance and planning comm­it­tee so that the related issues could be addressed.

He said that for the financial year 2019-20, the university would be able to generate revenues from its own sources to meet 70 per cent of its expenditure while the remaining 30pc expenditure would have to be borne by the provincial government.

Published in Dawn, April 17th, 2019

Opinion

Editorial

Noon leaks
Updated 27 Sep, 2022

Noon leaks

PMO audio leaks are a national security emergency that ought to be investigated at the highest level.
Cipher probe offer
27 Sep, 2022

Cipher probe offer

CONSIDERING the toxic political polarisation in the country, former prime minister Imran Khan’s suggestion that ...
Delaying Doha plans
27 Sep, 2022

Delaying Doha plans

WHEN Doha announced its intention to spend $3bn in different commercial and investment sectors of Pakistan around a...
Debt deferment
Updated 26 Sep, 2022

Debt deferment

Pakistan’s dollar funding needs for next 5 years have never been so large and world’s appetite to hold its hands never so poor.
Dengue concerns
26 Sep, 2022

Dengue concerns

AS weather conditions change in Pakistan, the threat of dengue looms large over the land. According to a warning...
Relic of colonialism
26 Sep, 2022

Relic of colonialism

THE law on sedition, one of several holdovers of colonial times, is among the most handy instruments for controlling...