Senate Committee Urges Small Landowners To Be Compensated First In KP Universities’ Land Case
Senate Standing Committee on Federal Education, Professional Training, National History and Literary Heritage in its meeting on Monday constituted a sub-committee under Senator Mushahid Hussain Sayed to resolve the issue of delays in payment of compensation to the landowners on whose land three universities were constructed in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, while urging that small landowners be compensated first.
The meeting was held under the chairmanship of Senator Rahila Magsi at the Parliament House on Monday and was attended senators, lawyers, bureaucrats and academics.
While discussing the delaying tactics by the Higher Education Commission for compensating people on who whose land the Bacha Khan University was built in Mardan, Senator Dilawar Khan said that priority should be given to people with smaller areas of land as they could not afford hiring lawyers. He added that they would not object if the compensation was given in tranches.
The university representatives told the committee that the matter was to be solved by the provincial government and the universities themselves don’t have the requisite money, which amounted to 15 billion.
On national heritage
While discussing steps taken by the government to preserve national heritage in the country, the committee was told by the ministry that after the 18th Amendment, the national heritage sites came under the purview of provincial governments and they were better suited to give details of any heritage sites explored in recent years.
The committee was informed that under the federal government, three sites including Rawat fort, Shah Allah Ditta and Ban Faqeerian have been identified.
Moreover, regarding preservation of Mehrgarh Civilisation in Balochistan, the committee decided to call provincial antiquities department to the next meeting.
On women campus of Kohat University of Sciences and Technology
With reference to the establishment of a separate women campus of Kohat University of Sciences and Technology, Senator Shamim Afridi informed the committee that he had transferred 190 Kanals of land in the name of the university.
The committee directed HEC and the ministry to coordinate a meeting between the senator and the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa government to ensure that the women campus was built on a land separate from the male campus considering the cultural sensitivity of the area.
The author is a reporter based in Islamabad.