Pashto Department at AWKUM at verge of closure
Riaz Khan Mayar
MARDAN: The Pashto Department at the Abdul Wali Khan University (AWKUM), Mardan has been facing a number of problems and it might be closed if the University administration did not take serious steps to address the problems.
Sources privy to the varsity told Sunrise Today that the university came into existence in the name of the nationalist leader Abdul Wali Khan and inaugurated by former chief minister Ameer Haider Hoti and later the Pashto Department was also opened at the university, adding that the department had been running without its chairman for the last three years.
They added that the University administration started discrimination with the Pashto Department as this year the university administration advertised the BS programmes in different disciplines but BS Pashto was intentionally ignored.
The sources said that different colleges and universities in the province had launched BS programmes but the AWKUM had not yet done it. They said that BS Pashto, M.Phil and PhD programmes were launched in other universities, but only MA Pashto was running at the AWKUM. “There is only a female lecturer in the department while the other two are just visiting lecturers”, the sources added.
They said the University administration ignored the department to an extent that during the last three years a single post for the Pashto Department had neither been created, nor been advertised in the papers.
When contacted, the focal person for the Pashto Department, Dr Sohail, confirmed it, saying that he had time and again intimated and reminded the University administration to resolve the issues, adding that he had also brought it into the notice of the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Governor Shah Farman in a function at the university.
“Despite all my efforts I have been making to improve the deplorable condition of the department, the University administration has been using delaying tactics,” he maintained, adding that the administration had always created hurdles in advertising the BS programme at the Pashto Department. He added that the administration turned down the Pashto BS programme on the reason that the department did not have a library.
Talking to Sunrise Today, famous writer, poet and columnist, Dr Humayun Huma said that it was a great tragedy for Pashtuns that the University administration had been mistreating the Pashto Department and added there was no professor at the department.
He added that the administration had allotted only a room to run the affairs of the Pashto department. He called upon the people’s representatives of all the political parties that without political affiliation they should come forward and raise their voice on the floor of the provincial assembly to this effect.
He also urged the civil society of Mardan district to raise their voice and demanded the Governor Shah Farman and Chief Minister Mahmood Khan to take notice of the issue.
“Needless to say, Pashto is our mother-tongue and it is the responsibility of all Pashtuns of Mardan district to raise voice for it irrespective of their political affiliations,” said Dr Humayun Huma.