PESHAWAR: A controversy has emerged over Islamia College University’s proposed budget for the fiscal year 2022-23 as senate of the university has approved only allocations for salaries of the employees and turned down the remaining major portion of the budget proposed for non-salary expenditures.

The senate, which met with Minister for Higher Education Kamran Bangash in the chair on Saturday, termed the proposed receipts against the expenditures for the upcoming year as ‘exaggerated’.

A statement issued by the Governor’s House about the meeting termed the varsity’s proposed budget full of exaggerated figures and expressed anger over what it called deceiving the high forum (senate).

The senate also ordered formation of a committee to review and rationalise figures of the proposed budget within three months. The committee consists of senior officials of the higher education and finance departments, Higher Education Commission and the administration of ICU.

Statement issued by Governor’s House says varsity’s proposed budget full of exaggerated figures

The senate directed the university to appoint persons only on the most important posts and stop recruitment of other employees.

Speaking at the senate meeting, Minister Kamran Bangash, who is also pro-vice chancellor of public sector universities, said that he would take up the matter of sharing exaggerated figures by the university with the senate with the governor and chief minister.

“We will not accept the ill-planned and irresponsible proposed budget,” he said. He said that the proposed budget of ICU was disappointing as compared to other public sector universities of the province.

Besides other, the senate meeting was also attended by the senior officials of higher education, finance and establishment departments, secretary to governor and ICU Vice-chancellor Prof Gul Majeed Khan.

The vice-chancellor, when contacted, defended his proposed budget, saying there was nothing wrong in the budget. He said that the estimated budget for the upcoming fiscal was Rs1.624 billion, which was Rs 40 million lesser then the revised budget of Rs1.664 billion for the outgoing fiscal.

About the senate’s claim of exaggerated figures in the propose budget, he said that the proposed budget was already reviewed by the finance and planning committee (F&PC) and syndicate of the university before placing it to the senate for approval.

The F&PC and syndicate consist of officials of higher education, finance and establishment departments but none of them objected to the figures.

Prof Gul Majeed said that the university was established in 2008 and since then its expenses stood lesser than that of the outgoing fiscal because of the austerity measures taken to steer it out of financial problems.

“Not a single person has been recruited during my tenure rather I have fired 400 contractual employees to reduce burden on the varsity kitty,” he added.

He said that HEC gave the university Rs402.8 million, which was sufficient for the salaries of only 28.6 per cent employees while the rest of the expenses were met through funds received from the varsity properties and student fees.

One of the participants of the meeting told Dawn that in the proposed budget, receipts of Rs400 million were reflected to be given by the provincial government.

The representatives of the finance department raised objection to the reflection of the amount, saying it was not possible to issue grants to 33 public sector universities functioning in the province.

The vice-chancellor said that provincial government had pledged to release grants to four universities.

He said that grants were released to three universities while Rs200 million of ICU was pending with the government.

“We are also expecting that the provincial government will release another grant of Rs200 million in the upcoming fiscal,” he added.

Published in Dawn, June 27th, 2022

Opinion

A crisis of trust?

A crisis of trust?

Most damaging fallout of the constant demonisation of opponents by political leaders is erosion of public trust in politicians.

Editorial

An unseemly dispute
08 Aug, 2022

An unseemly dispute

THERE is clarity, but perhaps not of the kind that Chief Justice of Pakistan Umar Ata Bandial hoped to achieve when...
Unfair on taxpayers
Updated 08 Aug, 2022

Unfair on taxpayers

Unfair move has drawn valid criticism as it coincides with drastic increase in income tax on salaried people and corporates.
Polio nightmare
08 Aug, 2022

Polio nightmare

AS if the resurgence of polio in southern KP were not enough, officials and international monitoring bodies must now...
Political stunt
Updated 07 Aug, 2022

Political stunt

The former PM is attempting to make a very expensive point with his decision to contest all 9 NA seats going up for by-election.
Monsoon emergency
07 Aug, 2022

Monsoon emergency

AS another wet weather system has entered Pakistan, and the federal government has declared a “monsoon...
Taliban’s denial
07 Aug, 2022

Taliban’s denial

THE Afghan Taliban’s recent statement denying any knowledge of the now deceased Al Qaeda chief Ayman...