Court ties appointment of SZABMU vice chancellor to verdict

Published: June 4, 2019
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FGHEA members protesting against the “privatisation” of government hospitals under the banner of SZABMU. PHOTO: Express/Zafar Aslam

FGHEA members protesting against the “privatisation” of government hospitals under the banner of SZABMU. PHOTO: Express/Zafar Aslam

ISLAMABAD: The process for appointing a new vice chancellor of the Shaheed Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto Medical University (SZABMU) in the federal capital has been challenged. The court issued notices to all the respondents while allowing the appointment process to continue but linked it to the decision of the court.

This was directed on Monday by a single-member bench of the Islamabad High Court (IHC), comprising Justice Miangul Hassan Aurangzeb while hearing a petition filed by Professor Dr Mulazim Hussain Bukhari.

Filed through Rashid Hafeez, Dr Bukhari contended that in the advertisement for the position, published on December 31, 2018, the now-defunct Capital Administration and Development Ministry had set the eligibility criteria as having a “minimum of eight quality research publications as professor in the indexed medical journals recognized by the Higher Education Commission (HEC) and the Pakistan Medical and Dental Council (PMDC)”.

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However, Dr Bukhari argued that this criterion was in violation of Section 12(2) of the SZABMU Act 2013, which calls for 15 years of teaching experience apart from producing “10 research papers in PMDC or HEC recognized journals”.

Dr Bukhari noted that he was one of the 32 applicants for the post and had made it to the six shortlisted candidates who were interviewed for the post. However, the search committee had recommended the name of Professor Tanwir Khaliq as vice chancellor of the university.

The petitioner contended that Prof Khaliq does not fulfil the eligibility criteria under the SZABMU Act 2013.

Justice Aurangzeb directed to issue notices to the respondents and set the next hearing after two weeks.

“Exemption sought for is allowed, subject to all just and legal exceptions,” the order read.

“Let the appointment process continue but the same shall be subject to the final outcome of this petition,” Justice Aurangzeb ordered.

Forced eviction of residents

The IHC on Monday sought a reply from the Ministry of Housing and Works in a petition challenging the forced eviction of residents from federal lodges and Gulshan-e-Jinnah.

The petition, filed by four local journalists challenging their eviction, was heard by Chief Justice Athar Minallah.

The petitioners’ counsel Shoaib Razzaq pleaded that the housing ministry had allotted residences to journalists under the 10% quota.

The prime minister had ordered to extend the allotment period for three months, which was stipulated to end on June 19. However, the ministry had evicted residents and violated the prime minister’s orders.

Chief Justice Minallah remarked that the petitioners should have approached the prime minister’s office again to get relief.

The court, however, served notices to the ministry and adjourned the hearing of the case.

Sheesha-bar brawl suspects denied bail

A district and sessions court on Monday rejected pleas for bail by two suspects for their failure to appear in court.

Judge Basit Saleem was hearing the case of an assault on a cameraman of a private television channel during coverage of a Sheesha-bar. The applicant’s counsel Raja Inaam Ameen said that the court must take cognizance of the suspects’ behaviour and how they had skipped the hearing for a second time.

The court gave some time to suspects to appear after which their bail was rejected. The case against the suspects was registered in Kohsar police station.

WITH ADDITIONAL INPUT FROM OUR CORRESPONDENT 

Published in The Express Tribune, June 4th, 2019.

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