Headhunt: Three names proposed for acting HEC chief

Top seat lying vacant for a month, govt remains indecisive.

Riazul Haq September 23, 2013
Top seat lying vacant for a month, govt remains indecisive. PHOTO: FILE

ISLAMABAD: The Ministry of Education, Trainings and Standards in Higher Education is proposing three names for the acting chief of the Higher Education Commission (HEC) following the refusal of Shamsh Kassim- Lakha, the founding president of the Aga Khan University.

“We are sending these names for the acting charge of the HEC till the government finalises the name,” said a high official at the ministry.

Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif, the appointing authority for the top slot of HEC, had refused to extend the contract of the past chairman Dr Javaid R Laghari or to give acting charge to executive director of the commission,Dr Mukhtar Ahmed.

Sources revealed that the three names suggested for the acting chairman HEC include Vice Chancellor (VC) of the University of Engineering and Technology, Peshawar, Imtiaz Gilani; VC of Balochistan University of Information and Technology, Farooq Bazai; and the former VC of Shah Abdul Latif University, Khairpur, Dr Nilofur Sheikh.

The three eminent educationists are also members of the 17-member HEC.


The three-year term of Dr Laghari has expired on August 27 and the government is yet to decide whom to appoint in his place. Confirming this dilemma, the Minister of State for Education, Trainings and Standards in Higher Education Balighur Rehman told The Express Tribune, “We are going to send the names to the prime minister next week,” he added.

Post to be publicised?

The sources added that the ministry has sought PM’s permission to release an advertisement inviting applications for the post.

It may be recalled that the previous HEC chairpersons had been directly appointed by the prime minister. “The summary to appoint HEC chairman through competitive process is surprising as the post is equal to that of a federal minister and cannot be offered the Management Position (MP-I) scale,” said a source in the HEC on the condition of anonymity.

Another officer called this a bureaucratic stunt for the reason that an appointment through MP-I scale will give sufficient space to red tape to rule the roost on such an important academic slot.

Published in The Express Tribune, September 23rd, 2013.


Farooq Agha | 9 years ago | Reply

MY respect for Shams Lakha has gone up, just as it had gone up for Dr Adil Najam when he had refused this job. Its a den of corruption and favors and will destroy any good man who touches it. Everyone who has been there has been a farce

kanwal | 9 years ago | Reply

How about Dr Hoobhoy?

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