The outgoing vice-chancellors of Lahore College for Women University (LCWU) and University of Education (UE) feel they have been dealt unceremonious exits by the provincial authorities who did not take into account their services for the department, as senior faculty members of both varsities were given additional charges of the vacant offices.
Both LCWU and UE vice-chancellors Prof Dr Bushra Mateen and Prof Dr Munawar Mirza, respectively, completed their four-year tenures on Nov 20 and were waiting for an official instruction whether to continue till the arrival of new regular incumbent or not.
Prof Mateen had reportedly been asking the Punjab higher education department for the last one year that since her tenure was going to end on Nov 20, 2010, the government might nominate a person for the slot, whom she would hand over the charge on the completion of her tenure.
Sources close to the VCs say it would have been better if the government had granted look-after charge to any person on the expiry of the date.
At a time when the Punjab government had granted another term to the VCs of University of Engineering and Technology, Lahore and University of Gujrat, both LCWU and UE VCs have felt the government did not find them trustworthy as the were not allowed to retain the charge for another three months or till the arrival of the new regular incumbent.
When contacted, Prof Dr Bushra Mateen said she had been asking the higher education department to nominate a person to take the charge after her term expired. “However, every official concerned was saying that she should continue holding the charge since she was no more an applicant for another term as the vice-chancellor,” she said.
It is learnt the higher education department had initially recommended that both Prof Mateen and Prof Mirza be allowed to continue with the charge. However, the summary was returned and the department was asked to suggest a panel of three senior faculty members from each varsity from which to select a name for assigning of the ‘look-after’ charge. The needful was done and a panel from each varsity was forwarded to the chief minister.
“The new higher education secretary, Haseeb Athar, did not even explain the exact position as he was approached to know about the latest position in the case,” said Prof Mateen, adding it was also for the first time that the Punjab government asked the department to suggest a panel for selection of an incumbent for the grant of look-after charge of the varsities’ top offices.
Prof Mateen said the treatment meted out to her was shocking for her as she had served the college and then the university for 20 years, taking the both institutions to new academic heights by starting masters classes in 26 subjects instead of the initial six. She said that she also introduced PhD programme in 11 subjects.
Meanwhile, the Punjab higher education department on Tuesday notified two senior-most faculty members to look after VC offices of the two varsities. Prof Dr Farhat Saleemi of LCWU physics department has been asked to look after the VC office in addition to her own duties for three months or till the appointment of regular incumbent. Similarly, Prof Farhat Saleem, principal of the University of Education’s Bank Road Campus, will look after UE VC’s office in addition to her own duties