LONDON: British-Pakistani barrister Fahrid Chishty has been awarded a highly prestigious legal scholarship by the Inns of Court in London.
This is the first time in the history of the programme that a Pegasus Scholar has been appointed to Pakistan, which marks a milestone moment.
The Pegasus Scholarship was developed under the auspices of Lord Goff of Chieveley in 1987 and is considered a highly prestigious award at the English Bar. It is granted annually to a small number of gifted junior barristers who are deemed future leaders of the legal profession.
The grant allows scholars the opportunity to travel overseas to observe the operation of the Common Law in different jurisdictions and build enduring links with fellow practitioners abroad.
Fahrid told Geo News that he will be travelling to Pakistan later this year to work with members of the legal fraternity and judiciary in connection with various criminal justice projects.
Fahrid said he is particularly interested in the question of criminal justice reform and will have the opportunity to study and review a raft of relevant domestic procedural and statutory laws. This will include matters ranging from the rules of evidence during the trial to sentencing policy and procedure.
He will also exchange views on Artificial Intelligence (AI), case management technologies and forensic evidence with his Pakistani equivalents in a bid to increase reciprocal, bilateral learning between the two countries’ respective legal professions.
Fahrid was called to the Bar in 2019 and practises from Libertas Chambers in London, specialising in criminal, constitutional, regulatory and international law.
He said he was honoured and deeply privileged to have been selected for this prize and looks forward to the opportunity to learn from colleagues and seniors in Pakistan.
He said: “Pakistan is a place close to my heart. My paternal grandparents hail from inner Lahore and my maternal family has their origins in Serai Saleh, Hazara. It would be an immense honour to be able to contribute back to the land of his forefathers in his capacity as an English-trained barrister and jurist.”
Fahrid’s father Makhdoom Chishti was a Commander with the Metropolitan Police Service at New Scotland Yard and became the highest-ranking Muslim police officer in the UK. He was awarded the Queens Police Medal for Distinguished Service in 2010 and later received the Sitar-i-Imitiaz from the President of Pakistan in 2018.
Makhdoom Chishti led Scotland Yard’s response against terrorism at a time when London and the UK faced serious terror threats during the ‘war on terror.’
Alert! HEC bans admissions to this university
The Higher Education Commission (HEC) has banned University of Lakki Marwat from granting new admissions or affiliations to the students over violations of its guidelines.
The education commission issued an alert through its official account on microblogging site, X, announcing the ban on the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa varsity.
It said that the ban has been imposed after observing some serious irregularities which affected the quality of education the students are receiving at the university.
The Higher Education Commission (HEC) Pakistan, in its recent inspection of the University of Lakki Marwat, on September 21, 2023, has observed serious irregularities and flagrant violations/non-adherence of HEC’s guidelines/criteria/policies that are adversely affecting the quality of education being imparted by the University of Lakki Marwat,” the commission said in the notice.
It said that it had completely banned the varsity from announcing fresh admissions and granting affiliations, and cautioned all the stakeholders from taking admissions with the institute.
Moreover, it publicly announced that there is a country-wide ban on granting of fresh affiliations by all public sector universities as well.
US Fulbright scholarship prgramme opens for Pakistani students
ISLAMABAD: The United States Educational Foundation in Pakistan (USEFP) has invited students to apply for the prestigious Fulbright Student Programme 2024.
The Fulbright Program in Pakistan is funded by the United States Government and is the world’s largest in terms of financial contribution, said a press release on Thursday.
Applications are welcome from all disciplines, including energy, water, agriculture, health, education, environmental science, and climate change. While clinical medicine is not included in the Fulbright Program, non-clinical public health applications are encouraged.
Interested applicants can apply at www.usefp.org before the deadline on February 28, 2024. The premier academic exchange program covers graduate studies, tuition, maintenance, insurance, and air travel.
All applicants are required to take the Graduate Record Examination (GRE) and must have a minimum score of 145 in both the verbal and quantitative sections of the exam. Shortlisted candidates will be required to take the Duolingo English Test.
On the impact of the Fulbright Program in Pakistan, US Ambassador Donald Blome said: “Pakistani Fulbrighters have solved social problems, written new laws, advanced policies to ensure equal access and voices to all, and so much more. They do this all for one purpose: to create a better, safer, and more prosperous Pakistan. In this goal, the United States and Pakistan are united.”
Under the Fulbright Programme, nearly 3,000 Pakistani students have received fully funded scholarships to study for graduate study since 2005. These awardees have completed their studies and research and are now making significant contributions to the public and private sectors with their knowledge and expertise.
In a message to potential applicants, USEFP Executive Director Rita Akhtar encourages talented students and working professionals to consider applying.
“We especially want to encourage applicants from public universities and under-served areas. Fulbright is a merit-based program, but in defining merit, the program considers the obstacles and challenges applicants have faced as well as their achievements.
“One of the goals of the program is to build human capacity in Pakistan, so successful applicants will plan to return to Pakistan on completion of their degrees and use their new skills and knowledge for the benefit of the country.”
FDE announces winter vacations for schools
ISLAMABAD: The government has announced the winter vacations for educational institutes functioning under the federal administration.
The winter break in the federal educational institutes will officially start from December 25 to December 29, a notification issued by the Federal Directorate of Education read.
However, Federal Directorate of Education officials said that the institutes will close on December 22, which falls on Friday, and reopen on January 1, 2024, (Monday).
Earlier in the month, Punjab and Sindh governments also announced the winter vacation schedule for the year.
In Punjab, the winter break for school children will commence from December 18, 2023, and continue till January 1, 2024.
“Winter vacations for children will commence from Dec 18 , 2023 to Jan 1, 2024,” Punjab caretaker Chief Minister Mohsin Naqvi had announced.
Meanwhile, the Sindh schools will have the vacations from December 22 to 31.
After the winter break, the educational institutions will reopen on Monday (January 1, 2024).
“In pursuance of decisions taken in the steering committee meeting, all public and private educational institutions under the administrative control of School Education and Literacy Department Government of Sindh shall remain closed w.e.f 22-12,023 to 31-12,023 for Winter Vacation,” a statement by the provincial government read.
Meanwhile, the new academic year in the public and private schools across Sindh will commence on April 15, 2024, and August 1, 2024, in the colleges.
The matriculation and intermediate exams will be started in the last week of May 2024, while the results will be announced on July 31 and the second week of August, respectively.