The more than two million residents of Swabi, living about an hour in the northeast of Peshawar, will finally have easy access to higher education. Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa Chief Minister (CM) Amir Haider Hoti on Saturday laid the foundation stone of the Ambar University.
The Rs300 million varsity will be spread over 200 kanals and is the first university in the district. It will offer a variety of undergraduate and graduate-level programmes, said officials familiar with the project. They, however, were not able to immediately provide the completion date of the project.
Addressing a rally after laying the foundation, CM Hoti said the Awami National Party (ANP) had almost doubled the number of university in Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa in their tenure from 10 to 18.
The chief minister also reiterated the government’s commitment to education in the province. He said they will provide stipends to 10,000 poor matriculation students and 15,000 intermediate students pursuing arts under the Stori Da Pakhtunkhwa Scheme.
He said that the government will provide free education to poor children, saying that they have set aside stipends for about 10,000 poor matriculation and 15,000 students pursuing Faculty of Arts.
The government, he said, is also focusing on areas where there are no public schools. There, he said, they have launched the Rokhana Pakhtunkhwa schemes, under which the government pays the educational expenses of needy students, he added. The project has been initiated in 100 private schools and will be expanded to 400 more schools in the second phase.
Hoti said they are trying to provide incentives to parents in remote districts like Torghar and Kohistan to send their daughters to schools. These incentives include a monthly stipend ranging from Rs1,500 to Rs2,000.
Published in The Express Tribune, December 2nd, 2012.