KARACHI, Jan 28: The Sindh High Court has put the provincial government on notice for Feb 1 in yet two more petitions challenging the locus standi and credibility of the IBA test for admission to the government medical colleges in Sindh.

Petitioners Daulat Kamal and Shaista Erum have moved the SHC against the omission of their names from the merit list, through counsel S. M. Iqbal and Mahmood Alam Rizvi.

Ms Daulat Kamal, who is daughter of a retired accountant and have nine sisters and a brother, had cleared her FSc in grade A from the PECHS College in 2000 with 73% (804 out of 1100 marks). In matriculation she had obtained 709 out of 850 marks, ie, A-1 with 83%. Last year (2001) she appeared in the test and was placed on 43rd position as per the provisional list. But she was denied admission on the pretext of alleged manipulation in the answer sheets of 35 students.

The other petitioner, Shaista Erum, had scored 81.7% in matriculation. In FSc from Sir Syed Government Girls College she obtained 758 out of 1100 marks.

These petitions have been clubbed together with other petitions which would be taken up by a division bench of the SHC on Feb 1, when the advocate-general Sindh is required to inform the court about the government’s instructions on the contentions of the petitioners whose counsel had proposed re-examination of a limited number of candidates. They had also requested for allowing the petitioners to deposit their fees with medical colleges while the matter was decided by the court.

The petitioners have taken the plea that answer sheets of 35 students were changed and manipulated deliberately to accommodate 35 other students who were below the merit level and there was a presumption that it was done to accommodate them.

The petitioners maintained that it was unprecedented that the names of the selected candidate were removed from the final list without assigning any reason and without issuing any show cause to the candidates.

They also referred to the arrest of some IBA employees who had allegedly manipulated copies of some of the candidates to oblige other students.

The petitioners, who were unable to comprehend the removal of their names from the selection list, received a notice from the respondent No 6, a DSP, seeking attendance for evidence in connection with the FIR No 97/2001, registered against the staff of the IBA under various sections of PPC at Mubina Town police station in Karachi.

The IBA, in its affidavit, denied the contentions of the other petitioners and maintained that it tried to hold the tests in a transparent manner.

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