Although Islam stresses upon importance of seeking education and so did Quaid-e-Azam, it is shocking that Pakistan Government has abdicated its primary function of regulating and providing quality education and promoting research and development by outsourcing it to private sector.

At time of partition, the subcontinent had two medical colleges attached to hospitals, one of them was KEMC in Lahore and other was in Calcutta. Some of best pre partition educational institutions were located in Lahore, Peshawar, Rawalpindi, Karachi etc, such as GC Lahore, KEMC, Kinnaird College, Gordon College Rawalpindi, Edwards College Peshawar, Murray College Sialkot, Mama Parsi and Madrasatul Islam in Karachi etc.

The government owned schools like Central Model in Lahore were as good or even better than private schools. It is unfortunate that instead of improving quality of education, it has deteriorated. It is primary constitutional function of the state, which it has outsourced and today education has been commercialized. Universities, colleges and schools have become a booming industry reaping profits. Quantity has replaced quality. Similar is the fate of health.

It is state’s failure to regulate which has resulted in over 4,000 of our doctors with post graduate degrees in MS and MD employed in Mid East and Gulf had their contracts terminated because private commercial institutions lacked structured training programs and did not meet SCFHS regulations. For over a decade the state closed its eyes until there was an international scandal exposing fake degrees being sold by AXACT and so powerful are their protectors that till today nobody has been given punishment they deserved.

No state in the world can survive and achieve economic self-reliance unless it invests in promotion of science, technology, economics and arts etc. Educational institutions must not be reduced to commercial business ventures.

MALIK TARIQ ALI,

Lahore.