Tuesday July 16, 2024

Process starts to upgrade Gomal’s Faculty of Agriculture

By Akhtar Shahzad
April 19, 2021

TANK: The Khyber Pakhtunkhwa government has decided to upgrade the Faculty of Agriculture, Gomal University to a full-fledged Agriculture University.

The provincial cabinet of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa made the decision at its 52nd meeting.

The cabinet meeting also approved one-time grant of Rs400 million and transfer of 1,000 kanal land in possession of Gomal University, Dera Ismail Khan, for the proposed university. The slashing of funds by the federal government and the Higher Education Commission (HEC) has created financial problems for the universities that are struggling all over Pakistan to meet their expenditure and pay salaries to the staff.

The upgraded Agriculture University in Dera Ismail Khan was also facing the dilemma as it was not fully functional until the provincial cabinet on March 16, 2021 put the issue on its agenda.

The 52nd meeting of the provincial cabinet took the decision vide sub item No.11 to upgrade the Faculty of Agriculture. Gomal University to a full-fledged agriculture university. Talking to this scribe, Vice-Chancellor Dr Masroor Ilahi Babar said the Agriculture University was facing the issue of inadequate funding, lack of infrastructure and the decline in research quality.

He said the region needed to have an applied science centre, adding, the establishment of a chartered university would be a step in the right direction. He said that the cabinet had approved development projects worth Rs4 billion. He added that in the past the university could not become fully functional due to lack of funds. The vice-chancellor said that the university had shown good performance and it was now out of the critical situation.

Dr Masroor Ilahi Babar said that at least 80 kanal land was needed for establishment of a chartered university, adding, the transfer of 1,000 kanal land by Gomal University for this purpose would solve the problems.

He said a committee had already been constituted by the government to determine the distribution of assets between the Gomal University and Agriculture University.

He added that the committee was to be headed by Commissioner Dera Ismail Khan whereas the secretary Agriculture, secretary Higher Education Department of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and both the VCs were members of the committee.