KARACHI: The Sindh High Court (SHC) on Friday suspended the operation of a notification of Higher Education Commission (HEC) regarding formation of a three-member committee to probe the alleged irregularities in the affairs of Federal Urdu University of Arts, Science and Technology (Fuuast).
Justice Irfan Saddat Khan, who headed a division bench of SHC, gave this interim injunction while hearing a petition filed by Fuuast through its registrar Dr Fahim-uddin. The court issued notice to Chairman HEC and three members of committee, asking them to submit their respective replies on a petition by July 07.
Petitioner’s counsel Khalid Javed submitted that HEC issued a notification on May 07, for appointing so-called three-member performance evaluation committee, comprising Prof Dr Khalid Mahmood Khan former vice chancellor of Pir Mehar Ali Shah of University of Arid Agriculture Rawalpindi, Prof Dr Iftikhar Ahmed Khan in-charge QA Division HEC, and Prof Dr Ghulam Ghous director (Finance and Planning) University of Azad Jammu Kashmir.
The committee has been constituted under Section 10(1)(b) of the HEC Ordinance 2002 which will look into the university’s affairs and submit its findings to chancellor of Fuuast and HEC within four weeks from issuance of the notification, he added.
Javed stated that according to Section 10, HEC is authorized to constitute committee to formulate policies and guiding principles for improvement and promotion of the higher education and socio-economic development of institutions, evaluate the performance of institutions and prepare through consultation with institutions the plans for development of higher education. “However, it was nowhere mentioned that HEC had powers to interfere in the affairs and governance of the university”.
He said that HEC had no authority to appoint committee for performance evaluation of the university with respect to complaints lodged by two members of Fuuast Senate members under the Section 10(1)(b) of the HEC Ordinance 2002.
The court was prayed to declare as illegal the notification issued by HEC and restrain its authorities from interfering in the university’s affairs.
According to notification of HEC, on the direction of president of Pakistan three-member committee has been constituted for the performance evaluation of the FUUST with respect to the complaint lodged by two members of FUUST Senate Syed Nasir Abbas and Seema Naz Siddiqui. The committee will submit the findings within four weeks from notification.
The two Fuuast senators had requested President Mamnon Hussain, who is also VC of Fuuast, to take notice of the alleged irregularities in the affairs of university since the new vice-chancellor had taken over the charge on February 1, 2013.
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