Public terms devolution of HEC a national tragedy
(The News, April 3 – 2011)
Terming it a national tragedy, the concerned citizens severely criticised the dissolution of Higher Education Commission (HEC) and appealed the Supreme Court to take suo moto notice over the issue in the larger interest of the country.
While using the modern facility of internet, thousands of people have joined cause to stop the dissolution of HEC in the HEC face book and blogs. The blogs and facebook contains the recent items have been published in various newspapers regarding HEC devolutions, television clippings of various programmes and also the editorials in print media.
A large number of people including students, academicians and scientists have commented on the blogs saying that devolution of HEC would have a disastrous impact on research and growth of the country.
The internet users have asked HEC to file a petition in Supreme Court. “Why HEC is not knocking the door of SC when it is a regulatory body and very much exists in the Federal Legislative List part (1) and Federal Legislative List (2),” said Adnan Khan, an internet user.
People believe that devolution of HEC will reverse all the efforts and practical plans being taken for the improvement of education set-up/infrastructure in Pakistan at par with international standard and to empower the provinces means go back to Stone Age. “I strongly oppose the decision of Implementation Committee and the government must withdraw its decision for devolution of HEC for National Interest,” said one of the facebook users.
There are also suggestions for the vice chancellors to call for a strike to press the government to reconsider its decision regarding the devolution of universities. “All VCs should come out and strike against the injustice being done to the nation,” said Amir Manzor, a facebook user.
He said that HEC was one of those rare sectors of Pakistan that was growing at a pace that even India was scared of it. “Why don’t those sitting in power corridors take notice of the issue,” he asked.
The facebook pages of HEC also asked for the voting on “are you in favour of government decision on devolution of HEC to the provinces?” Expectedly the voters have voted against the decision and termed it somewhat ‘insane’ decision by the government. “Not at all. This is a criminal act and a great injustice to the education sector. I would appeal to all those involved in this not to jeopardise the future of this nation,” said Aqeel Shazad while commenting on the decision.
There were also few people who criticised few policies of HEC, but of the view that such policies should be reviewed instead of devolving the whole commission. “Although HEC initiated some good projects to improvise higher education in Pakistan yet some policies were not good. But still, it’s the sign of derailing our system and HEC is one of them,” said Mohammad Aasim.
One the other hand there were people who thought something fishy was going around in the HEC devolution process. “The 18th Amendment through the 4th Schedule (Article 70(4) Federal Legislative Lists Part-I and Part-II) fully supports the current powers and functions of the HEC, and includes higher education and research as federal subjects. How come Higher Education become part of Implementation Commission when previously it was not,” said Nazia Malik.