KU discusses death of Congo Virus-infected butcher
Karachi: In order to discuss the recent death of a Congo Crimean Haemorrhagic Virus (CCHV) infected butcher at Landhi Abattoir, who visited several hospitals for treatment and eventually expired, a joint meeting of the Pakistan Society for Microbiology (PSM), the Infection Control Society of Pakistan (ICSP) and the Bio-Safety Association of Pakistan (BSAP) was held at the University of Karachi (KU).

The meeting was held with special reference to exposure of healthcare personnel who may have attended this patient and the possible source from where he contracted the infection, said a press release issued here on Sunday.

Prof. Dr Shahana Kazmi (KU) and Dr Rafique Khanani (DOW), who attended a meeting in the Health Department Sindh on July 9, informed the participants about the measures taken by the government to control the spread of CCHV in Karachi.

All the participants, including Sikandar Sherwani (FUUAST), Dr Ghulam Fatima (Civil), and Prof Dr Aqeel Ahmad (KU) agreed that CCHV is endemic in some parts of Pakistan. According to them, such cases are reported sporadically and there is nothing to worry.

They, however, stressed on the need of an effective national strategy to contain such infections. The participants highlighted that Crimean-Congo Haemorrhagic Fever (CCHF) is a widespread tick-borne zoonotic viral infection caused by Nairo Virus that may affect humans seriously with mortality rate of 30 per cent.

In 75 per cent cases, signs of haemorrhage appear within three to five days of the onset of illness, mood instability, mental confusion, bleeding nose, bleeding gums, vomiting, bloody urine, bloody stool.

Diagnosis is suggested on clinical grounds when the patient has a tick bite or exposure to the infected products of blood, body secretions or excretions of the patients. For diagnosis, IgG and IgM antibodies can be detected in the laboratory from sera samples of the infected individuals by ELIZA method. PCR is a more sensitive and reliable diagnostic tool for CCHF, which is currently available at very few centres in Karachi, they said.

There is a vaccine available for this infection except an antiviral drug called ribavirin. Most of the participants recommended, “In order to control the spread we should organise awareness and Bio-safety training sessions for health care workers, lab technicians and paramedical staff, butchers, livestock and agriculture farmers to enhanced capacity for the proper surveillance”.

Diagnosis of CCHF should be established at designated centres to avoid unnecessary exposure of healthy citizens to the infected and to control such spreading infections, they added.

During the discussion Prof. Shahana Kazmi also disclosed that the KU has developed a comprehensive project on “Emerging Zoonotic Pathogen Surveillance Program (EZPSP), in view of increasing incidence and deaths due to zoonotic or vector borne viral and bacterial diseases.

She said, “The problems cause is especially severe in underdeveloped and developing countries like Pakistan where surveillance and monitoring of pathogens is poor and our public health infrastructure is not optimally developed”.

All bacterial and viral pathogens represent potential public safety threats; however, some of them “especially dangerous pathogens” or EDPs – Plague, Anthrax, Dengue and CCHF are of particular concern because of their ability to cause lethal infections which spread rapidly and trigger outbreaks or epidemics with potential of neurodegenerative complications like Multiple Sclerosis(MS), Sub-acute Sclerosing Pan-encephalitis (SSPE), she further said.

According to her there is an urgent need to improve knowledge concerning the prevalence, distribution, and basic biological properties of EDPs worldwide. The emergence and spread can be rapidly detected and closely monitored, and appropriate science-based prevention, treatment, and containment strategies should be developed, she told the participants.

The primary objective of the proposed multi-pathogen project is to determine the baseline of occurrence and the basic biological characteristics of selected EDPs of concern in Pakistan, she said. The appropriate education, eradication and treatment efforts can be planned to protect the Pakistani citizenry and economy from the effects of disease outbreaks, she mentioned.

Dr Shahana added that a very significant aspect of the proposed project is that it will stipulate surveying and studying multiple EDPs at the same time, which will enable a comprehensive and simultaneous screening for several highly virulent bacterial and viral pathogens.

Karachi University postponed MA papers

Postponed KU MA papers to be held on 14th
Karachi, July 12: The University of Karachi has announced that all postponed papers of MA Previous (Regular and External) Annual Examination originally scheduled for July 8 will be held on July 14 (Wednesday). These papers were postponed due to unavoidable circumstances, and now will be held on July 14. The centre and timings of the papers will be as already announced in the schedule/programme. app

FAST-NU convocation for session 2009-10

FAST-NU convocation on July 17
Peshawar, July 12: The 5th convocation of Foundation for Advancement of Science & Technology (FAST) and National University of Computer and Emerging Sciences for the session 2009-10 will be held here on July 17.

Prof Dr M Qasim Jan, former vice-chancellor of Quaid-e-Azam University, Islamabad, and University of Peshawar, will be the chief guest on the occasion. “A total of 152 graduates of the university will be awarded degrees while 16 graduates of various disciplines will get medals for their distinctive performance,” said Dr S Ghiasul Haq, director of the Peshawar Campus of the institution.

Peshawar Campus was established in 2001, he said, adding, “We have about 500 students on roll at present while the strength of our permanent faculty is 42 including eight PhDs. We also have some 15 visiting faculty.” He said the courses of Bachelor in Computer Science, Electrical Engineering, BBA, MBA, MS in Mathematics and Computer Science and PhD Mathematics were currently being taught here. The news

Students of model school shine in SSC Part-II exam
Islamabad: Keeping the traditions of past, Federal Government Boys Model School, I-9/4, Islamabad, maintained excellent result in the Federal Board of Intermediate and Secondary Education (FBISE) Secondary School Certificate Part II Annual Examination 2010, says a press release issued here on Saturday. Out of 160 students who appeared in the exam, 18 students got A-1 grade, while 29 got A, 34 got B, 38 got C and 21 students got grade D. The over all percentage of the school was 88.05 per cent with 3.43 GPA. Hassan Ali (roll no 104451) got 1000 marks in the examination securing first position in the school and 12th in the board. Asad Iqbal got 981 marks, Sohaib Ali got 976 marks and got second and third positions respectively in the school. The news

Roots inks accord with Emaar Pakistan
Islamabad: Roots School System and Emaar Pakistan have signed an agreement to open a campus of the school in Islamabad’s premier Canyon Views, residential development, says a press release issued here Sunday.

The RSS will start its operation in the Canyon Views as early as August 2010 with a pilot school to be transformed later into a flagship purpose built campus of the Roots School System. The announcement was made at ceremony held at the Canyon Views to mark the signing of the agreement. Dr Dia Maleen, Regional CEO of Emaar Midle East and Emaar Pakistan Group and Roots School System Director Faisal Mushtaq signed the agreement.

Addressing the ceremony Faisal Mushtaq said “For the last 22 years RSS has sponsored educational change, opportunity, achievement, excellence and excitement across communities, town, cities through our student centred educational system.”

Surplus primary teachers being transferred to rural areas
Peshawar: The Khyber Pakhtunkhwa government has introduced a new policy to address shortage of teachers in the public sector primary schools.

“The policy, introduced recently by the elementary and secondary education department, envisages adjustment of existing teachers keeping in view the strength of students enrolled in the government primary schools,” an official said.

According to the new policy, teachers would be posted in schools, particularly located out of the cities, where deficiency exists by reducing staff from those schools, where they are in higher numbers.

The teachers of primary schools serving in the city areas are given some additional incentives, which are not provided in the rural areas. The attractive allowances prompted teachers to get posted in the city areas, no matter they were needed there or not, the official said.

“Primary schools in rural areas are left without sufficient number of teachers, who try to get posted at city schools for getting incentives. On the other hand more than required teachers are posted in the schools of city areas,” he said.

The additional director of elementary and secondary education department, Hakeemullah, called the new policy as ‘rationalisation policy.’ The presence of teachers in all primary schools would be ensured at all costs, he said.

He confirmed transfer of surplus teachers to the primary schools of urban areas. Citing the example of Government Girls Primary School Qaidabad in Kakshal area, he said that 15 women teachers were posted at the school where only five were needed.

“Now we have linked the salaries of the teachers with their areas of appointment. A teacher appointed in a union council, will work in the same area or adjacent union council forever. If a teacher manages his transfer to the city area, his salary will be stopped,” he said.

The new policy would help ensure presence of teachers in primary schools of rural areas, he said. “The ration of teacher and students is set at 1:40,” he said.

He said teachers in the city schools were getting house rent, which was 45 per cent of their basic pay, while in rural area the amount was reduced to 30 per cent. Similarly, there was no conveyance allowance in the rural areas while teachers in the city were getting Rs1,200 to Rs2,400 in the name of that allowance.

It is worth mentioning that around 367 primary schools are closed for non-availability of teachers across the province, leaving thousands of children out of school. Dawn

Theme: Education in Pakistan: Issues, Challenges and Reforms
October 21-23, 2010

Abstract Date:                                   August 23, 2010
Notification of Acceptance:               September 18, 2010-06-24
Submission of Full length paper:       October 11, 2010


1. Curriculum and Instruction
2. Effective pedagogical Strategies
3. Assessment and Evaluation
4. Teacher Development
5. Leadership in Education
6. ICT in Education
7. Reforms in School Education
8. Reforms in Higher Education
9. Education Policies
10. Public Private Partnership
11. Quality Assurance and Accreditation
12. Gender Issues
13. Financing of Education
14. Impact of Globalization

Contact for Information
Prof. Dr. Hafiz Muhammad Iqbal
Dean, Faculty of Education
University of the Punjab, Lahore
Email: drhmiqbal@gmail.com
Cell: +92-300-9455296