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The disaster called KU Girls’ Hostel

By SYED JAFAR ASKARI

KARACHI – Students residing in the girls’ hostel at Karachi University (KU) have strongly criticised the hostel’s provost Dr Nasreen Aslam Shah for her ‘poor performance’ and ‘criminal negligence’ to her duty as administrator.

The students say that Dr Shah has been trying to hide her ‘poor performance’ and ‘criminal negligence’ to the her duty by providing the media false information pertaining to the hostel management.

Talking to The Nation on Thursday, a group of angry students, on the condition of anonymity, said that students, who had staged protest on 27 January against the dilapidated condition of the hostel, were being terrified for dire consequences by the hostel provost Dr Nasreen Aslam Shah and Warden Hameeda Manzoor.

They said the claims of Dr Shah, who is also the Director for the Centre of Excellence for Women Studies, that students are being charged monthly only Rs 200 under the category of Room Rent is totally baseless and false.

Providing the actual hostel’s receipts of food and room rent, they said that the administration was receiving as much as Rs 2,000 from single student of MS and BS level as ‘room charges’ on semester bases (six months). “While Rs 1,050 are additionally charged if some one uses a computer and a refrigerator in the room. However, PhD students, residing in the Inn, have to pay around Rs 5,000 for the same facility”, they maintained.

The hostel administration is charging Rs 1,800 per month on account of food, contrary to what Dr Shah had claimed, while talking to media recently, that her management was charging only Rs 9,00 per month for this account.

They complaining students said that as many as 180 students had been housed in 104 rooms of the hostel with no proper cleanliness system.

“Students are facing health problems, as the building has become a breeding place of mosquitoes to improper defunct drainage system. The hostel is scene of over-flowing gutters. This is the peak of apathy by the administration that the sweepers do not empty dustbins out even after passing three days. Sometimes students have to suffer stomach problems due to supply of inappropriate food available at the cafeteria of hostel,” they claimed.

They told the scribe that following the protest, the Dr Shah and Hameeda Manzoor had tried to meet the girls but they did not meet them and rejected their ‘suggestion’ to stay calm.

We have already demanded the KU Vice Chancellor Prof Dr Pirzada Qasim Raza Siddiqui to replace the present administration with a better one. The students also claimed that Dr Shah had also used ‘inappropriate’ language with the students while ‘threatening’ them.

“Now when our protest is all over the media, she has got confused over the protest of students against her mismanagement and she was lying not only to the media but also with KU administration. Nowadays, she is trying to clean the mess up at the hostel, following the constitution of 3-member inquiry committee by the KU VC, which is likely to visiting the hostel any day”, the added.

Despite the repeated efforts to contact the hostel provost Dr Shah on her cell phone, she was not available for the comments on the students’ complaints.
Source: The Nation
Date:1/30/2009

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