• Sindh govt official distances himself from delay, says CM granted permission to hold selection boards
• Hafiz Naeem supports teachers’ demands, opposes their strike

KARACHI: Thousands of students of Karachi University continued to suffer for the second consecutive day on Wednesday due to a complete boycott by varsity’s teachers.

The boycott continued despite the fact that the Sindh chief minister granted KU permission to hold selection boards.

Asked whether teachers would continue their protest as permission for the selection boards have been officially granted, Dr Ghufran Alam, the vice president of the Karachi University Teachers’ Society (Kuts), said the body had demanded a schedule for the selection boards from the vice chancellor.

“We are waiting for a complete schedule of the selection boards per our demand. So far, we haven’t received any positive signal from the administration,” he said.

Also on Wednesday, a group of students belonging to the Peoples Students Federation (PSF) held a demonstration outside the university’s administration block.

The chanted slogans against the protesting teachers for what they called paralysing the varsity for their vested interests. Later, they dispersed peacefully.

Secretary blames VC for delay

Universities and Boards Secretary Mureed Rahimoon on Wednesday blamed the KU vice chancellor for delaying the 2019 selection boards that had brought about a complete halt to academic activities on the campus this week.

Speaking to Dawn, he squarely blamed the university administration for the prevailing unrest on the campus.

“The chief minister has granted the permission [today] the university has requested for the selection boards. There was absolutely no delay on our part,” Mr Rahimoon claimed.

According to him, the university administration approached the department for permission in November last year but without sharing required information. “This detailed information about the selection boards was finally provided last week in the required format. We have nothing to do with the prevailing situation.”

He cited examples of other universities where the selection boards were being held smoothly after getting permission for the same from the chief minister.

The secretary also rejected the impression that the provincial department had any role to play in the new appointments being unnecessarily delayed at KU’s mass communication department.

Meanwhile, Jamat-i-Islami’s Karachi chief Hafiz Naeemur Rehman met a delegation of Kuts and backed their demands.

“The provincial government is usurping powers of KU to bring about a system serving its interests. The entire infrastructure of the university has collapsed and teachers are on strike but there is no one to look into this mess,” the JI chief said.

“We support teachers’ demands and will fight for the cause of education. But, we don’t support the strike, causing suffering to students,” he said.

Published in Dawn, February 16th, 2023

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