SU, UAF Vice-Chancellors agree to carry out joint research

A 5-member delegation of the University of Agriculture Faisalabad (UAF) led by scientist Prof Dr Muhammad Jalal Arif called on the Sindh University (SU) Vice-Chancellor Professor (Meritorious) Dr Muhammad Siddique Kalhoro and exchanged views on joint research projects and other academic collaboration.
The delegation working on a research project to eliminate locusts from Sindh and Balochistan termed the University of Sindh as one of the best universities in the country and expressed their interest to work with its faculty members in the field of research.
During the meeting, the Vice-Chancellor, University of Agriculture, Faisalabad Prof. Dr. Iqrar Ahmad Khan also had a telephone conversation with his SU counterpart. They both agreed to jointly collaborate and carry out research activities, ensure faculty exchange and hold informative workshops in the days to come.
SU Vice-Chancellor Dr. Muhammad Siddique Kalhoro on the occasion invited his counterpart to pay a visit to the University of Sindh in order to share ideas of joint collaboration and reach a memorandum of understanding (MoU) who accepted the invitation and said that he would soon visit the University of Sindh.
The Vice-Chancellor Prof. Dr. Muhammad Siddique Kalhoro during his telephone conversation told his counterpart Dr. Iqrar Ahmad Khan said that without research, the role of the university was nothing and there was no difference between a university and a college.
He said that the universities had to focus on research while the University of Sindh was working hard in this regard.
The two Vice-Chancellors agreed to work together on different research projects, exchange programs and other areas for the benefit of both universities, scholars and students.
Meanwhile, in the meeting, the scientist of UAF Dr. Muhammad Jalal Arif, introduced his team members including Dr. Muhammad Dildar Gogi, Dr. Shahid Majeed and Dr. Abid Ali accompanied him from the Department of Entomology, University of Agriculture. SU’s Assistant Professor of the Department of Zoology Dr. Riffat Sultana was also present in the moot.
He briefed the Vice-Chancellor Prof. Dr. Muhammad Siddique Kalhoro on the going research upon prevention of attacks of locusts in Sindh and their genocide.
The scientist said that Dr. Riffat Sultana, an Assistant Professor at SU’s Department of Zoology had been appointed as focal person by the higher education commission (HEC) Islamabad in order to eliminate locusts who had been destroying the crops, fruits, saplings and trees in the province.
He said that the other researchers belonging to SU will also be added to the research team in different projects, adding that the project to eliminate locusts was of Rs. 64 million, which had been received from the Higher Education Commission Islamabad.
“This is a world bank funded project through HEC to get rid of locusts and ensure preservation of crops, fruits and other valuable plants in Sindh and Punjab”, he said and established that the locusts were found in Pasni, Ormara, Gwadar, Lasbela and other parts of Balochistan, which migrated to Sindh and destroyed crops, fruits, trees and plants from time to time.
He said after destruction of crops in Sindh, the locusts had been paving their way to the Punjab in search of different yields.
Talking on the working modus operandi of the Universities across Pakistan, he told the Vice-Chancellor that the promotions of teachers at the University of Agricultural Faisalabad were linked with obtaining research projects from the HEC and even the appointments of chairpersons of various departments, Directors of the Centers and the Deans of Faculties were also conditional with the academic feat and par excellence.
“Those professors who contribute something to their universities should be facilitated”, he said.
The well-known scientist further said that it was not necessary to assign any academic position to a professor who never obtained any project from the HEC because the length of service did not matter in today’s contemporary and fast era.
“The seniority of 30 to 35-year-service at the universities does not keep importance to be promoted or appointed to key academic positions like chairperson, director or dean”, he stated.
He said that the Higher Education Commission Islamabad was providing a huge amount of funds for conducting research in various fields for which every teacher should submit a proposal. He said that the job of the university was only to pay salaries, pensions and utility bills, however, for the rest of the facilities, the professors had to struggle and win the research projects.

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The meeting also approved the renaming of the Institute of Agricultural Extension and Rural Development as an institute of Education, Extension and Rural Development. It also approved the renaming of the Institute of Animal and Dairy Sciences as the Institute of Animal Nutrition and Feed Technology. The meeting also approved the statutes for the appointment of subject specialists / advisers. Dr Muhammad Ashfaq was nominated as member of the Finance and Planning Committee in the meeting. They approved the reduced budget deficit of Rs 186 million from Rs 596 million due to better financial management. The meeting also gave a nod to Annual Report 2017-18.  The drivers BPS has been upgraded to BPS 7 from BPS 4.

Dr Muhammad Ashraf said that all-out efforts were being made to address problems of campus community. He said that university was making headway to find its place in the top 500 universities in the world acclaimed rankings. He said that the UAF was committed to ensure food security in the country. He added that without tangible research work, we could not compete with the rest of the world.  He said that university has produced 98,809 manpower so far.

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