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Court declares all barriers to resuming studies illegal

May 31, 2012

ISLAMABAD, May 31: It may be good news for the students who wanted to continue their education, but were reluctant either due to the strict policy of their respective educational institutions or fear of facing a heavy fine, that the Islamabad High Court (IHC) declared all such barriers as illegal.

Justice Shaukat Aziz Siddiqui while deciding a petition of Saima Safdar, a MBA student of National University of Modern Languages (Numl), directed the educational institutions must not show any sort of hostility and ill will, which may ruin the educational career of any student.

He directed the Numl management to impose a symbolic fine on the student, if necessary, because imposing a fine of Rs0.16 million was very harsh and against the ordinary prudence. The honourable justice further observed, if the money was being charged as dues, even then, there was no justification whatsoever, to demand such a huge amount from a student.

Barrister Afzal Hussain, counsel for the petitioner, during the hearing told the court that his client Ms Safdar submitted a synopsis for her thesis in Business Administration to the university in July 2006 whereas the deadline was December the same year. However, the university management returned it directing the student to improve her research work.

He said, the student then got married and could not continue her education but she, once again, approached the Numl management in September 2007 requesting to be allowed to submit the improved synopsis.

In January 2010, after delaying the matter for over two years, the university management intimated the student that her request had been accepted and asked her to deposit Rs0.16 fine, along with her revised synopsis, he added.

The counsel pointed out that the delay was caused by the university management and it was not the fault of the petitioner.

Therefore, he contested before the court that imposition of heavy fine was not justified.