A group of Peshawar University students have begun a charity campaign after the varsity announced it was not able to pay full salaries to its employees from February onwards due to the suffering caused by the worst economic crisis the institute has ever witnessed.
They have established a camp in which everyone can visit and donate in order to help the university financially.
Muhammad Arsalan, a student of the university, who stands on the main entrance of the campus to collect charity from passers-by, told The Express Tribune that it was unfortunate that the government - federal and provincial - can’t provide the oldest alma mater in the province without financial assistance.
"This is our alma mater therefore it is our responsibility to do whatever help we can. That’s why we have contributed a little amount of money and are requesting everyone else to join us by donating money for the varsity”, he said.
The University is facing almost a one billion rupees deficit, forcing it to issue a notification that no employee will be paid full allowances from now on.
The Islami Jamiat Talba (IJT) spokesperson Tahir Ullah said that the provincial government should have taken steps to help UOP but they failed to do so.
“This has forced us to take steps and start a drive within the campus and we request all the students unions to assist us by making the drive a success" he said.
Imad Nizami, a student of the Environmental Science Department, told The Express Tribune that for the past two years, the students wings of different political parties were requesting the government to focus on the problems faced by UOP to help check the brewing crisis.
“One of the aims of this donation camp is to help the government realise the gravity of the situation and act quickly to save the higher education system in the province", Nizami added.
The University of Peshawar Employees Association (UPEA) has already warned the administration that they will not accept the payment of basic salary sans allowances. They highlighted that their salaries were already very low and deducting the allowances will leave them with nothing.
Published in The Express Tribune, February 5th, 2021.
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