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‘Invalid’ degrees issued by private institute: Protesting students baton-charged

‘Invalid’ degrees issued by private institute: Protesting students baton-charged

DERA GHAZI KHAN: Police baton charged students of a private institution on Monday who threw the traffic on Dera-Quetta inter-provincial road out of gear for five hours in protest against issuance of invalid degrees and transcripts, arresting some two dozen of them.

A large number of students of the Indus International Institute, allegedly owned by federal communication minister Hafiz Abdul Karim, took out a rally and blocked the Dera-Quetta Road for traffic for some five hours.

They were protesting against the institute’s administration for issuing them invalid degrees and transcripts, alleging they were awarded these documents which were not recognised by the Higher Education Commission (HEC).

Punjab Governor Rafique Rajwana was the chief guest at the degree awarding ceremony.

Some two dozen held after five-hour blockade of Dera-Quetta Road

The students were carrying placards inscribed with slogan against the federal minister who is said to be the institute owner.

The mother of one of the protesting students also joined the protest, demanding the authorities concerned should take action against those who “cheated” the students despite charging heavy fees. She said that she had joined the protest for securing her son’s career.

The police reached the spot and baton charged the protesters to get the road clear for traffic.

Some of the media persons complained they were also manhandled by the Gaddai police. They alleged the police snatched cameras from the media people and deleted the footage of the incident.

Gadai police arrested at least two dozen protesters.

One of the protestors told Dawn that as many as 1,500 students were awarded invalid transcripts despite studying at the institute for four years.

He said during their studies, the institute changed its affiliation three times, adding that initially it was affiliated with the Urdu University, then NCBE and lastly with the Government College University Faisalabad (GCUF).

Because of frequent changes in affiliation the institute could not maintain proper record of the students, he added.

Representatives of the Pakistan People’s Party and the Pakistan Tehrik-i- Insaf also took part in the protest.

MPL-N MPA and chief of Leghari tribe, Jamal Khan Laghari, also expressed solidarity with the protesters and said he was not agitating against the ruling party but a private institution which betrayed its students.

He also strongly condemned police baton charge on the students. District Police Officer Ahmed Nawaz Cheema told Dawn that the protesting students kept the national highway blocked for more than five hours.

He said the police also tried to convince the protesters that they should at least spare one track of the road for traffic but they refused to budge and attacked police. Consequently, the police had to take action to disperse them, he added.

Published in Dawn, August 22nd, 2017

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