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Governor orders probe, seeks report within fortnight

PESHAWAR: Amid prolonged protest by the teaching fraternity of the Malakand University, Chakdara against the alleged corrupt practices, irregularities, favouritism in appointments and admission as well as threats to teachers by Vice-Chancellor Dr Gul Zaman, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Governor Shah Farman has ordered a high-level committee to look into the matter and submit a report to him within a fortnight.

Two separate notifications were issued to this effect and a committee under special secretary, Higher Education Department (HED), Ali Qadir Safi has been formed to probe the alleged irregularities in the university.

The protesting teachers have, however, demanded the government to suspend the incumbent vice-chancellor or send him on forced leave till completion of the inquiry so that he may not influence the investigation process.

A protest campaign spearheaded by the Malakand University Teachers Association against Vice-Chancellor Dr Gul Zaman has been going on for the last several months. The protesting teachers claim that the vice-chancellor instead of resolving the genuine problems in the university has resorted to victimisation.

The teachers maintained that they have been denied their due promotions and their relatives were not given admission in higher studies despite the fact that they were having top positions in the merit lists. On the other hand, the vice-chancellor first relaxed rules for the admission of his own wife in MPhil in English Department and then awarded her admission though she was at the bottom of the merit list and even the gold medalist of the same department was denied admission. Some teachers complained that the wife of another professor, who has remained in the forefront of the protest drive, was denied admission in MPhil despite the fact that she was on the top of the merit list.

The vice-chancellor has been accused of misconduct, giving threats to protesting teachers, corruption in the university funds, favouritism in promotions and appointments and other serious irregularities. The matter has already been taken up in the university syndicate, which referred the issue to the Governor’s Inspection Team, but no such inquiry could be held, sources told The News.

Even now that the governor has ordered a high-level committee, there is great unrest among the protesting teachers, who believe he may influence the inquiry. Therefore, they are demanding his removal from the office till completion of the probe.

The teachers demanded the government to take immediate action against the vice-chancellor to save the university from further deterioration and put things back in order.

Vice-chancellor Dr Gul Zaman could not be reached on his phone for comments. A spokesman for the university, however, told The News that none of the allegations of the teachers could be proved as yet. “These are mere allegations and I think it would be inappropriate to comment on such allegations. Now that a committee has been formed, let it inquire into the matter and fix responsibility,” he said.

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