HEC’s projects in re­mote ar­eas

Pakistan Observer - - EDITORIALS & COMMENTS -

SINCE its in­cep­tion, HEC (Higher Ed­u­ca­tion Com­mis­sion) has played a piv­otal and laud­able role in pro­mo­tion of higher ed­u­ca­tion. Be­cause of its ef­forts and sup­port pro­grammes, many stu­dents are ac­quir­ing doc­tor­ate de­grees in dif­fer­ent dis­ci­plines both at home and abroad. The Com­mis­sion’s fu­ture plans of pro­mot­ing the higher ed­u­ca­tion in far flung and re­mote ar­eas is another ap­pre­cia­ble step that would greatly help bridge the gap be­tween un­der­de­vel­oped and de­vel­oped ar­eas and re­move the sense of de­pri­va­tion of peo­ple in back­ward ar­eas.

Ac­cord­ing to re­ports, gov­ern­ment has ear­marked twenty two bil­lion ru­pees for var­i­ous HEC’s projects. Amongst the main projects that would be ex­e­cuted in­clude the es­tab­lish­ment of Gwadar and Baltistan univer­si­ties as well as cam­pus of Balochis­tan Univer­sity in Zhob. In­deed, this is a sig­nif­i­cant and re­mark­able ini­tia­tive, as it would help peo­ple of back­ward ar­eas es­pe­cially of Gwadar to take full ad­van­tage of multi-bil­lion dollar CPEC (China-Pak­istan Eco­nomic Cor­ri­dor) project. As we are hear­ing from both the Chi­nese friends and the gov­ern­ment of­fi­cials that the Gwadar port would be­come op­er­a­tional by the end of this year, there­fore, it was im­per­a­tive that youth of this area are equipped with mod­ern and higher ed­u­ca­tion so that they could ex­ploit op­por­tu­ni­ties to be gen­er­ated by the eco­nomic ac­tiv­i­ties at the port. We have no doubt in mind that the port city would emerge as one of the most de­vel­oped and mod­ern cities in the next few years be­cause of its geo-strate­gic lo­ca­tion and tak­ing along the youth of the area would help ex­tract its true div­i­dends. We be­lieve that es­tab­lish­ment of Gwadar Univer­sity re­flects gov­ern­ment’s full de­ter­mi­na­tion to­wards the de­vel­op­ment of CPEC and the Gwadar port. We hope that more ma­jor ini­tia­tives would be launched in Gwadar and Balochis­tan to help re­move griev­ances of the lo­cal peo­ple and to reap real fruits of the game changer CPEC project.

SEV­ERAL years ago, as one re­calls, BBC World tele­cast a most in­ter­est­ing re­port on a demon­stra­tion in London ar­ranged by dog-lovers. The rai­son d’etre was to de­nounce the South Korean prac­tice of eat­ing dog meat. The tim­ing was de­ter­mined by the fact that the foot­ball World Cup Cham­pi­onship that year had South Korea as a co-host. The de­mon­stra­tors wanted dog meat off the menus of the South Korean restau­rants dur­ing the World Cup Cham­pi­onship and, pre­sum­ably, be­yond.

What was strik­ing in the tele­cast was that the con­trary views of pro-Korea per­sons were also pre­sented. The lat­ter were shown ar­gu­ing that a clear dis­tinc­tion needed to be made be­tween ‘pet dogs’ and ‘dog meat’ that hap­pened to be an item of food for sev­eral na­tions in the re­gion. Just be­cause cer­tain ca­nines were reared and loved as pets in the West did not mean that ‘a source of food’ should be banned. They pointed to the prac­tice in cer­tain West­ern coun­tries of eat­ing such items as frog legs served as a del­i­cacy. If Kore­ans and oth­ers con­sid­ered dog meat as a del­i­cacy, it re­lated to their eat­ing habits and ‘that was hardly the con­cern of out­siders’.

Over the cen­turies, man has so di­ver­si­fied his eat­ing habits as to make it noth­ing short of bizarre. Much like ‘haute cou­ture’, ‘haute cui­sine’ too has de­vel­oped its kinky facets. A lot of these re­late


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