Higher education is crucial for the socio-economic development of the country. The international cooperation has been greatly helpful in human resource and faculty development in higher education sector in Pakistan. It was stated during the seminar organized here at National Library Islamabad on the topic of “Development of Country to Country Relationships in Higher Education Sector of Pakistan” . The seminar was jointly organized by The Diplomatic Insight Inter University Consortium for Promotion of Social Sciences Pakistan and American Institute of Pakistan Studies and presided over by Prof. Dr. Mohammad Nizamuddin Chairperson National Committee on Development of Social Sciences/Vice Chancellor University of Gujrat, Gujrat. The seminar was attended by vice chancellors, diplomats, academicians, civil society and scholars.
Delivering keynote address, Prof. Dr. Sohail H. Naqvi former executive director Higher Education Commission HEC described the young bright minds are the greatest asset of Pakistan. He said that realizing this fact, more attention was paid to this important segment of society in higher education sector of Pakistan during last ten years. He informed that young Pakistanis were provided opportunities to equip themselves with modern knowledge and technology in the leading universities of academically advanced countries. The pool of these trained and educated young people has been greatly helpful in overcoming the shortage of skilled human resource and qualified faculty in Pakistan. These Pakistani scholars performed exceptionally well and success rate of the attainment of PhD degree has been more than 95%. The hard work and intelligence level of Pakistani scholars has been acknowledged by the officials and academicians of partner countries. These young people as ambassador of Pakistan not only strengthened bilateral relationship with more than fifteen countries but also created good image of their country around the globe. While elaborating the selection process for award of scholarships, he informed that that each Pakistani scholar was selected through well-defined and transparent mechanism. So far, over ten thousand scholarships in more than 20 different programs have been awarded, and not a single complaint on account of lack of transparency has been received or proved. Transparency was ensured through an open advertisement in national newspapers and on the HEC website. The merit at each level for short listing was determined by test score/ scores in previous exams. In addition, the final selection of candidates for foreign scholarships was undertaken by panels of professors/ experts of foreign countries, without the involvement of HEC. All the scholarships were finally awarded through National Scholarship Management Committee NSMC, constituted by the Honorable Prime Minister of Pakistan. This important national committee is comprised of representatives of provincial governments and federal departments.
Dr. Anita Weiss Professor/ Head of International Studies University of Oregon US and Vice President of American Institute of Pakistan Studies remarked that during last few years the senior faculty belonging to leading American universities has successfully conducted dissertation writing workshops for the young Pakistani scholars for enhancing their capacities especially in the disciplines of social sciences.
Prof. Dr. Muhammad Nizamuddin said that international collaborations especially in the fields of social sciences, arts and humanities would be greatly helpful in undertaking research and towards solution of socio-economic problems being confronted by Pakistani society. Prof. Dr Muhammad Mukhtar Chairperson IUCPSS/ Vice Chancellor the Islamia University Bahawalpur acknowledged the support and role of HEC in strengthening relationship of Pakistani universities with leading foreign higher education institutes.
Dr. Masoom Yasinzai Vice Chancellor Quaid-i-Azam University Islamabad, Dr. Rasool Bakhsh Raisani Vice Chancellor University of Balochistan Quetta, Dr. Zakir Hussain Vice Chancellor Govt. College University Faisalabad and diplomats also spoke on the occasion.
Higher Education cooperation between Pakistan and Central Asian Republics (CARs) was the focus of video conferencing seminar held here at The Higher Education Commission(HEC) Islamabad, organized in connection with 20th Anniversary of diplomatic relations between Pakistan and six Central Asian Republics (Azerbaijan, Uzbekistan, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, and Turkmenistan. This initiative was taken by The Diplomatic Insight in collaboration with Inter University Consortium for Promotion of Social Sciences, Arts and Humanities Pakistan (IUCPSS), HEC. The aim of the seminar was to exchange ideas and build bridges for evolving new relationships in making headways for developing deep rooted connection in sectors like government to government contacts, science & technology, culture, trade and economy with special focus on exploring educational linkages among universities.
Expressing his views on the occasion, Prof. Dr. S. Sohail H. Naqvi Executive Director HEC said that Pakistan-Central Asia relations are based on geographical proximity, common history, culture, traditions, religion, values and destiny. Pakistan and these Republics can work together and avail the expertise of one another in the areas of research, information technology and scientific cooperation. This collaboration would be greatly helpful for the socio –economic development of the region. He also suggested that Central Asian Republics can also benefit from the development made in higher education sector in Pakistan during last decade. He also shared the progress and development occurred during last ten years in the higher education sector of Pakistan. He thanked Muhammad Asif Noor, Editor-In-Chief of The Diplomatic Insight for taking such step of making this connection between education institution and diplomatic community.
The Ambassadors and diplomats representing the missions from the Central Asian and Caucasian Republics also stressed the significance of relationship with Pakistan. On the occasion, Mr. Dashgin Shikarov Ambassador of Republic of Azerbaijan, Dr. Ismatulla Fayzullaev, Chief of Mission Embassy of Republic of Uzbekistan, Mr. Kubanychbek Toktorbaev, Deputy Head of Mission of Kyrgyz Republic and Major Guvanch Orazov, Deputy Head of Mission of Republic of Turkmenistan spoke and highlighted the relationship between Pakistan and Central Asia. They have also highlighted various opportunities that can be explored through bilateral cooperation.
The Ambassadors and diplomats also added that we can collaborate in numerous areas, such as scientific and technical fields, banking, insurance, pharmaceutical industry, tourism and media. The economies of Central Asian Republics and Pakistan are complementary to each other. There is cooperation in several spheres, notably, war against terrorism, combating religious extremism and drug trafficking and potential in transit trade.
The faculty and the students form IUCPSS member institutions form University of Gujrat, Government College University Faisalabad, Shah Abdul Latif University Khairpur, University of Baluchistan Quetta, Institute of Management Sciences Peshawar, Bahauddin Zakariya University Multan, The Islamia University of Bahawalpur and COMSATS Institute of Information Technology Abbottabad participated lively through video conferencing and expressed their views over various aspects of relationship
The Embassy of Brazil in collaboration with The Diplomatic Insight magazine organized the launching of the English and Urdu version of the book “Knowing Brazil: A guide about Brazil for Pakistani youth”. The event, also marked the beginning of the celebrations of the Brazilian National Day, was attended by members of the diplomatic community, government, academia, and the press. The book has been published by The Diplomatic Insight magazine in cooperation with Embassy of Brazil in Pakistan. The book is also meant to celebrate the 60th anniversary of the opening of the first Embassy of Brazil in Pakistan( Karachi:1952) and 64th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between Brazil and Pakistan(1948).
The book, co-authored by Ms. Farhat Asif and Mr. Asif Noor, was edited in English and Urdu, and is aimed at making Brazil better known among the young generation of Pakistanis. In his speech, the Ambassador of Brazil, H.E. Alfredo Leoni, stated that, although Brazil and Pakistan have a longstanding relationship, his country wants to “strengthen ties with Pakistan in other fields, such as culture, sports, tourism and education. And we especially want to bring our peoples closer. That is the idea behind this book.”
Knowing Brazil will be distributed to schools all around Pakistan in both languages, so that young students have access to it and are able to learn more about Brazil. The goal of reaching the future leaders and professionals of Pakistan was highlighted by the Brazilian Ambassador in his speech: “It is by working with the young generations that we will be able to enhance the friendly relations between our Governments and the brotherly ties between our peoples”, said H.E. Alfredo Leoni.
The Diplomatic Insight magazine is cooperating with missions in Pakistan to make the countries known to the people of Pakistan. The aim is to enhance relations and cross the barriers to know more about each other in order to build relationships and understanding through dialogue and knowledge. The organization is not only publishing books, research and analytical reports, supplements and newsletters but also organize seminars, workshops, conferences, roundtable dialogues and produce documentaries on various issues like interfaith harmony, dialogue among civilizations, cultural diplomacy, religions, peace. The publishing of this book is another step in the direction of creates knowledge about Brazil for people of Pakistan so that we can work on exploring new directions and new dimensions of longstanding relationships. Many people know Brazil only for football or carnival, but the country has much more than that. It has such a diverse culture and it is so strong in many economic fields.
Through this book, Pakistani students will be able to get to know all the major regions of Brazil, their differences and similarities, as well as learn more about the country’s geography, history, arts, sports and cuisine. As H.E. Alfredo Leoni affirmed, the book will certainly encourage Pakistanis to establish more contacts with Brazil and the Brazilians.
Pakistan is a land of rich cultural heritage and has remained cradle for the leading world’s civilizations from the time immemorial. After independence from the colonial rule, we have inherited this legacy and it came to us as at treasure which is now called as Pakistan’s national heritage. It is so rich and diversified that we, as a nation, are always proud of our glorious past. The heritage, arts, crafts, culture and history is matchless around the globe. It is our responsibility now to save and preserve this for our next generations. “Tribal Heritage” art gallery, owned by Mr. Zia Hashmi, has been established with an aim to preserve this rich historical past for the generations to come. Mr. Zia has collected various pieces of arts and crafts from across Pakistan and saved them in this gallery. The gallery itself is unique piece of art and is worth visiting.
The year 2012 is marked with the completion of 20 years of diplomatic relations between Pakistan and Central Asian states. To commemorate these relations, The Diplomatic Insight organized an exclusive get together of the diplomats from the brotherly countries in Islamabad. The event was attended by the diplomats followed by a cake cutting ceremony. The get together of such kind was meant to enhance deep rooted historical brotherly relations between Central Asian States like Azerbaijan, Uzbekistan, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, and Afghanistan with Pakistan. The forum was later open for discussion. Participants highlighted that there exists huge potential in Pakistan and in these countries in terms of trade, natural resources, education, opportunity for business, tourism and travel, cultural linkages, arts and crafts. It was suggested that this kind of get together must continue as would help promote the ever necessary people to people contacts thus to help reduce the irritants that prevent us to move ahead in the direction of cooperation. It was recommended to start an association of Pakistan-Central Asia where people from all these countries belonging to various walks of life including academicians, businessmen, journalists, students, parliamentarian and diplomats, can come and sit together to chalk out plans for future collaborations.
The Diplomatic Insight in collaboration with Pakistan Norway Friendship Association jointly organized a seminar on “Pakistan-Scandinavian Friendship- Earning and Learning” on 16 July,2012 at Baskin Chalet Restaurant in Islamabad. The event was arranged with an objective to highlight the deep rooted connections between the countries of the region while especially focusing on those expatriate Pakistanis who have been living in Scandinavia for their studies and businesses. Many of the participants were members of PANA( Pakistan-Norway Association). While addressing the gathering, Vice President of the Association, Dr. Ali Nawaz, highlighted the scope and objective of the association in Pakistan. He said that there is close contact between Pakistan and Norway, largely because of the Diaspora of “New Norwegians” with Pakistani ethnicity in Norway. There are almost 2-3000 Norwegian citizens of Pakistani ethnicity, who live in or visit relatives in Pakistan every year, or come to promote their businesses.
Several hundreds of Pakistanis citizens visit annually relatives and friends in Norway, others go for business, study program and related. PANA wishes that trade, education, culture, research and generally people-to-people contact between the two countries can be expanded in the years to come. The Association hopes to be a forum where to realize these objectives of improved cooperation and contact between Pakistan and Norway. During the discussion, members and participants of the seminar highlighted their enrich experience while living in Norway and other countries. Various opportunities of education and business.