— Dawn
— Dawn

FAISALABAD: The Government College University Faisalabad (GCUF) has taken the flak for displaying signboards that contain couplets erroneously attributed to Allama Iqbal.

The signboards also carry the picture of the national poet and, according to teachers, have been on display for the last many years.

The university spokesperson claims that the mistake has been identified and the Directorate of Student Affairs asked to rectify it.

The issue came to the surface after it went viral on a social media website on Monday.

Dr Qasim Mahmood, who has done his PhD in Iqbaliayat and teaches at a government college, told Dawn that it’s a blunder on the part of the university. He said its inexplicable given the fact that the Urdu department of the university had many highly qualified academics and its head was a PhD in Iqbaliayat.

“The vice chancellor seems to have asked someone to install the boards without consulting the Urdu department for the selection of poetry,” he said.

He said such blunders were understandable on the social media because of absence of rules and regulations but it’s inexplicable in the case of a renowned institution. Such carelessness, he said, brought bad name to the institution.

Dr Mahmood urged the Higher Education Commission (HEC) to look into the issue and devise a strategy to check such glaring blunders by the educational institutions.

The university teachers say the boards had been installed at various places without consultation of the Urdu Department. They claim these had been displayed in the university for about four years and the mistake pointed out many times in the past but no one bothered to rectify it.

They say the university administration instead of rectifying the mistake, tries to hush up the issue with the claim that only two boards have the problem.

Speaking to Dawn, the university spokesperson admitted that the signboards had been installed during the tenure of Dr Mohammad Ali Shah as vice chancellor and the mistake was pointed out when Dr Nasir Ameen was in the saddle.

Dr Ameen served as the acting vice chancellor and relinquished his charge just a couple of weeks ago following the appointment of a regular vice chancellor, he said.

These boards were gifted to the university by a former student, said the spokesperson.

“We have prepared new boards with the help of professors of Urdu and these will replace the wrong ones,” he said.

Published in Dawn, August 28th, 2019

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