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October 23, 2019

HEC to ensure implementation of anti-harassment policy in institutions


October 23, 2019

Islamabad: Higher Education Commission (HEC) is revising its anti-harassment policy to ensure effective implementation of the policy in higher education institutions (HIEs).

Under this initiative, detailed guidelines will be issued to the universities and implementation will be monitored by the HEC. Formation of an appellate mechanism is also under consideration so that if an applicant is not satisfied with the decision of the committee formed under the policy, they can apply at the appellate forum.

This was stated by Higher Education Commission (HEC) Chairman Dr. Tariq Banuri, while addressing a press conference on Tuesday. He said that creation of appellate forum and some other ideas came under discussion in vice chancellors meeting and final decision on the most appropriate mechanism will be taken after consultation. He said that the new policy would be issued in next two to three months.

He said that apart from their educational rights, the right of students’ safety and privacy also needs to be protected, and the misuse of technology available to universities under Smart University Programme must be impeded.

HEC chairman demanded the government to restore funding. “We have always been ensured of complete cooperation by the Prime Minister but we need this cooperation in the financial form,” he said.

Tariq Banuri said that the government plans to provide scholarships for needy students under BISP, which will include fee and stipend. “Relief on the side of students is encouraging but we also require relief on the side of HEIs.”

The media briefing was held in the backdrop of recent tragic incidents in various universities across the country, including the alleged breach of students’ privacy at the University of Balochistan, mysterious death of a student at Shaheed Muhtarma Benazir Bhutto Medical University, Larkana, alleged negligence that caused death of a student in Bahria University, Islamabad, death of a student of COMSATS University, Islamabad, and the students attack on Vice Chancellor Federal Urdu University, Karachi.

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