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Arid university: Tussle over new appointments

July 19, 2012

ISLAMABAD, July 18: Member selection board of Pir Mehr Ali Shah University of Arid Agriculture Rawalpindi Dr Riaz Hussain Qureshi has declared the process of appointment of 129 faculty members and employees in the university against the rules and refused to become a part of it.

On the other hand Academic Staff Association (ASA) of the university has also announced that they will oppose the process of appointment on July 20, Dawn has learnt.

According to sources, Dr Qureshi, who is also adviser at Higher Education Commission (HEC), on Wednesday wrote letters to relevant departments in which he stated that criteria which has been adopted by the management of the university was against the rules and he does not want to be part of any appointment in violation of rules as he has a good reputation.

The reason why ASA is criticising the appointment of new staff members stems from the fear that merit was not considered during completion of relevant process.

President ASA Prof Nadeem Akhtar Abbasi, while talking to Dawn, said management of the university has violated rules due to which ASA has been trying to save the system.

“HEC has ranked us at 7th position which shows the university has been doing well but now it seems that the new management of the university will destroy the system because all the procedures have been ignored for the appointment of 129 new staff members,” he said.

Prof Fayyazul Hassan Sahi, general secretary of ASA, said Dr Mohammad Irfanul Haq was given charge as the acting vice-chancellor (VC) of the university on May 27, 2012. He will retire on July 29, as he will reach his date of superannuation.

“Although acting VC does not have powers of full VC, still Dr Haq started transferring and promoting officers. Then he decided to recruit new officers/staff and advertised 129 posts in basic pay scale (BPS) 1 to 21,” he said.

“According to rules of the commission regarding recruitment process, after advertisement, three to four weeks times should be given to candidates and then those candidates who were not being called for interviews should be informed in writing. The reason of refusal should also be mentioned,” he said.

“Recent advertisements by the management gave only 12 days for the closing because the new VC wants to appoint all 129 staff members before his departure. Besides, some posts do not exist in the budget allocation. So appointment on those posts will create another issue,” he claimed.

“Already 186 faculty members are working in the university but still the management wants to appoint more. On the other hand universities all over the country have been facing financial problems. So the act of the management is not understandable,” he said.

According to documents available with Dawn, four members of the university syndicate i.e. Dr Abdul Rauf, Dr Ikram Ali Malik, Dr Audil Rashid and Safdar Ali also showed reservations on the appointment process and they informed the relevant departments in writing.

Member Selection Board of the University and HEC adviser Dr Riaz Hussain Qureshi confirmed that he has sent letters to the HEC chairman, university management and other relevant departments that he will not become part of the appointment process.

“I have written that the process adopted for the appointment was unjustified and appointments should be postponed and after that, due procedure should be adopted for the appointments,” he said.

The university’s VC, Dr Mohammad Irfanul Haq, while talking to Dawn, said it was correct that he was appointed as acting VC on May 27 and will reach date of superannuation on July 29 but it has nothing to do with the appointments. There are members in selection board and they will appoint the employees on merit.

“I have been informed that member selection board Dr Riaz Qureshi has sent letters in which he has stated that appointments should be postponed but he did not bother to discuss the issue with me which has disappointed me,” he said.

“I have been trying to resolve the issues of the university by giving due respect to those who are seniors and were ignored during the last 10 years. There are 16 members of ASA and most of them think that I am doing right but president of ASA has been trying to take advantage of his seat,” he said.