Islamabad - Riphah International University yesterday held its 11th convocation while President of Pakistan Mamnoon Hussain was chief guest of the ceremony who urged upon researches and students to play a vital role in the development of the country.

The ceremony was held in Jinnah convention centre where a large number of students with their parents participated and expressed confidence on the university.

The President on this occasion greeted the students and said that higher education has become an essential ingredient of a developed nation.

He said that he believes that human capital is being provided by the educational institutions and as such the future lies in research, development and higher education.

He also greeted the Ripah International University management and its founder for being a distinguished institution in the country that has achieved second ranking in private sector general category in Pakistan.

The President urged upon the people of Pakistan to put education on their priority list as not nation could ever strive and succeed in achieving success in its endeavours.

Addressing at the Convocation of Ripah University here, the President reminded the students that a full comprehension and adaption of these transformations were inevitable to achieve national objectives.  It was also equally important to understand the factors that pushed this region into unrest and instability; promoted extremism and caused unprecedented bloodshed, which not only affected Pakistan but the whole region, he added.

The President said besides, emerging changes in the arena of international politics, it was also important for the youth to realize the global economic trends for their future challenges and opportunities.

As a result of the emerging global scenario and the new alignments, this region has got special importance, he said, adding it was in this backdrop that the national leadership, had undertaken a long-term strategy and launched the Economic Corridor with the cooperation of our great friend China.

He noted with satisfaction that CPEC was currently in the completion phase and with the grace of Allah Almighty, trade convoys had also started moving under it. This corridor was in a way an extension of the historic Silk Route, which would not only benefit this region but the whole world, he added.

He said new prospects of development and progress had emerged from the operationalisation of the Gwadar Port where first trade cargo had been sent.

The President noted with appreciation that Russia and Central Asian Republics (CARs) had also expressed their keen interest and desire to become a part of the CPEC and benefit from the vast connectivity opportunities being created.

He said efforts were on to make Diamer-Bhasha Dam a part of the CPEC.

A number of wind, solar, coal and nuclear energy projects were also being implemented, he said, adding that there was no change in CPEC Western route. The President, about the steps taken by the current government for the economic turnaround, said it had paid back $10 billion debt with interest out of the total $15 billion of the past regimes, whereas the foreign reserves had surged to $24 billion.

The President said the role of Pakistan and China for including all countries of the region in CPEC, a project of progress and prosperity would be written in the history in golden words.

He said for availing these opportunities created for Pakistan’s stability and prosperity, the youth would have to prepare themselves with the latest knowledge, skills and expertise.

While without compromising on ideologies and national objectives, they have to conform to the global system, and put his region on the road of progress and stability, by taking it out from the clutches of war and conflicts, he added.

He also regretted that during previous regimes, corruption had left the country lagging behind in respect of progress and development.

The President hoped that everybody in the country would now contribute towards completion of all the development projects, so that the dreams of our Quaid and Allama Iqbal should be realized.

Dr Mukhtar, Chairman Higher Education Commission, Hassan Muhammad Khan, Chancellor (Designate), Prof Dr Anis Ahmad, Vice Chancellor, and Ambassadors of China, Mauritius and Oman were also present on the occasion.

He said education was essential to move ahead with the world, but the objectives of education could not be achieved if its moral aspect was ignored, a society became weakened if it lost its moral values due to corruption and debauchery.

Appreciating launch of “Life and Living” programme by the Ripah University, he asked the Higher Education Commission to also include other universities in this experience, after reviewing this curriculum.

The President said noted that the women made half or even more of Pakistan’s population. This proportion of population indicated that until our women included themselves in the mainstream, the dream of national development would not be realized, he added.

The President also advised that they should always keep in mind the fact that they were the daughters of the Islamic Republic of Pakistan, who had their own ideological and cultural identity.

This caution was essential, as the people who go abroad, particularly, youth represent themselves as country’s ambassadors and their acts exhibit their country’s identity, he added.

The President also greeted the management, chancellor, vice chancellor and faculty for achieving the distinction of 2nd ranked General Category University of Pakistan in the country at a national level.

HEC Chairman Dr Mukhtar Ahmed, Chancellor Hasan Mohammad Khan, Vice Chancellor Prof Dr Anis Ahmed and the Registrar along with faculty members attended the ceremony.

HEC chairman on this occasion expressed his faith and confidence in the Ripah University and said it has progressively come forward in terms of achieving distinction in education and research and attaining high ranking among universities in General category as per Pakistan Rankings of Higher Education Institutions 2015.