LAHORE: Punjab Minister for Higher Education Raja Yassir Humayun Sarfraz has said the role of the private sector universities is of great importance for improvement in the education sector.

He said all chartered universities were permitted for admission after fulfilling all the legal requirements and private universities were autonomous in their financial affairs and the government could not compel them to reduce their fees.

He was addressing a press conference with regard to new chartered universities held at Board of Intermediate and Secondary Education (BISE) Lahore on Wednesday.

The minister said the government would appreciate the endeavours of all institutions who were working for the promotion of education while adding that all the chartered universities being established across Punjab would soon be notified after fulfilling all the legal requirements.

He said: “We have not only set up 21 new universities in the short span of four years but also fully encouraged universities being established in the private sector.”

Mr Sarfraz said on the private members day all the private universities acquiring charter have been mandated to start the enrolment of children after implementing all the formulated rules and regulations being set out by the Higher Education Department (HED) and the Punjab Higher Education Commission (PHEC).

He said the department would fully assist these universities in this regard and that the cases of these universities would be sent to the HEC within 10 days after fulfilling all the legal requirements and after getting their approval, the varsities would be given permission for enrolment in Punjab.

Mr Sarfraz said the PHEC has also the legal right that it can check any university and can immediately recommend action on the violation of the set rules and regulations.

In reply to a question, he stated that the private universities are autonomous in their financial affairs and can charge fee of their own will. He said the government only takes steps to make the fees of government universities affordable for the general public.

He told a questioner that a search committee was constituted and it would soon conduct interviews of the applicants for the appointment of vice chancellor of the Punjab University and would send its recommendations to the government.

Published in Dawn, October 6th, 2022

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