SMI to get university status ‘within days’ | Pakistan Today

SMI to get university status ‘within days’

Giving university status to the Sindh Madressatul Islam (SMI) is not a matter of months but days as instead of waiting for the next assembly session for passing the ‘Sindh Madressa University (SMU) Bill’, the Sindh governor shall be requested to issue an ordinance, said Senior Education and Literacy Minister Pir Mazharul Haq. He was speaking as the chief guest at the 126th anniversary of SMI on Thursday. “Last year, President Asif Ali Zardari had announced university status for SMI along with Rs 250 million in grants. As the SMI came under the administrative control of the provincial government on April 5, a summary for SMU and approval of Rs 250 million was sent to the Sindh chief minister; but is still at the chief minister office for sanction,” Haq said.
He said that he will request the chief minister to give the formal approval of the summary. “President Zardari is interested in seeing this historic institution turned into a university soon as his great grandfather Khan Bahadur Hassanally Effendi founded the SMI.”
The senior minister stated that with his grandfather Pir Illahi Bakhsh’s efforts, the SMI had received college status in 1943, which was then inaugurated by Quaid-e-Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah. “Today I wish to contribute for the university status of SMI.”
Lauding the services of Effendi and other founding fathers of SMI, Haq said the establishment of SMI during the British Raj was a miracle as there were no modern educational institutions for the Muslims of Sindh at that time. “The SMI brought the Muslims of Sindh into the mainstream by producing leadership in every sphere of life and among them the most prominent was Jinnah.”
“We spend 1.4 percent of the gross domestic product (GDP) on education but according to the new education policy of 2010, it should be raised up to seven percent,” the provincial education minister said. “Hence the federal government should provide financial assistance to the Sindh Education Department until the new education policy and National Finance Commission Award is implemented.”
Haq said the rows of shops constructed alongside the SMI should be removed because they have defaced the historic building of the institution.
“In India, there are no shops around Taj Mahal, but here we have constructed shops and encroached on three sides of this beautiful building,” the minister said. “The Sindh government shall take strict action against these shops soon that will be removed.”
In his presentation titled ‘Past, Present and Future of Sindh Madressa’, SMI Principal Dr Muhammad Ali Shaikh traced the history of the institution and highlighted the affection of Quaid-e-Azam, Zulfikar Ali Bhutto, Benazir Bhutto and President Zardari among others towards SMI.
He requested the chief minister for his approval of the summary of SMU as the president has already issued directives and the federal cabinet too has given approval.
Adviser to Sindh governor Khan Yousuf Jamal, Benazir Bhutto University Lyari Registrar Mehboob Shaikh, Board Intermediate Education Karachi Chairman Anwaar Ahmed Zai, SMI Vice Principals Afroz Abbasi and Shabbir Ahmed Qureshi, teachers Imran Naqvi and Afshan Bano, and students Zargoona Khan and Farz Ahmed also spoke on the occasion.
Haq also cut the cake for celebrating the 126th anniversary of SMI along with Shaikh and other guests.

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