LAHORE - Provincial Higher Education Minister Syed Raza Ali Gillani has said that the standard of public sector universities will be improved according to the international standards so that our universities can be included in the ranking of top 500 universities of the world.

He said this while presiding over a meeting of vice chancellors of public sector universities at the GCU Auditorium on Monday. Chairman PHEC Dr Muhammad Nizamuddin, DG PHEC Dr Shahid Saroya and Higher Education Department officials attended the meeting.

The meeting reviewed in detail the various features of public sector universities, including the state of academics, future vision, financial and administrative position and available research facilities, being imparted to the students. The vice chancellors gave a detailed briefing about their universities’ working.

Giving 14-point agenda to the Vice Chancellors to sufficiently improve the overall standards of their universities, the minister directed them to develop and implement a composite roadmap of future vision so that the target of bringing sufficient improvements in the higher education sector could be achieved according to timeline.

The minister said that the Punjab government is fully committed to bring qualitative improvements in public sector universities so that they could get conspicuous place in top 500 universities of the world and Punjab be known as the hub of quality education in the whole of Asia.

He directed that universities should take full benefit of digital revolution and set up electronic libraries for the students. He said that complaint-cell portion should also be established at universities’ websites so that their redressal could be monitored continuously.

The students should also be kept fully informed about various local and international scholarship opportunities. The hard working vice chancellors would be fully encouraged as well, he added. He said that efforts are being made about raise in universities’ budget for 2017-18 so that they could perform well. He informed that no additional charge would be given to anybody.

The minister directed that any adjustment in fee should be routed through the PHEC to him for approval well in advance as government is committed to provide best quality education at the cheapest rates. He asked the PHEC to sensitise the VCs about various available educational opportunities so that they could bring best improvements in their universities.

The VCs appreciated that the Punjab government has included the study of higher education sector in its public policy ambit.  While talking to the media, the minister said that the performance of universities would be made result-based so that this sector could produce best professionals for the country.

He informed that a commission would be set up to monitor the working of private universities. This commission would also monitor that if these universities are working according to their charter.  The Punjab government has always given top importance to the education sector and we want to give best quality education to the students, he added.