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Pakistan Bar Council serves notice on 7 universities

Universities include Quaid-i-Azam University, Islamia University of Bahawalpur, Karachi University, Federal Urdu University Islamabad and Karachi campus, Shah Abdul Latif Bhatai University, Shaheed Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto University, Bahauddin Zakriya University and Jamshoro University, Sindh

Punjab Bar Council’s request will be discussed in the next meeting: PBC Legal Education Committee Chairman Shoaib ShaheenIttefaq

By Muhammad Ittefaq

LAHORE: The Pakistan Bar Council (PBC) has issued notices to seven universities of the country for failing to meet their criterion to offer law degree, Pakistan Bar Council Legal Legal-Education-USEEducation Committee Chairman Mr. Muhammad Shoaib Shaheen told The Educationist.

He said the universities included Quaid-i-Azam University, Islamia University of Bahawalpur, Karachi University, Federal Urdu University Islamabad and Karachi campus, Shah Abdul Latif Bhatai University, Shaheed Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto University, Bahauddin Zakriya University and Jamshoro University, Sindh.

 

During the meeting on Saturday PBC members expressed serious concerns about the law degree awarding institutions and universities, which were not meeting their criteria.

Shaheen said QAU has been asked to stop fresh intake of law students and do not advertise in newspapers about law admission during the current academic year because it has only two permanent faculty members and

Shoaib Shaheen, Chairman Legal Education Committee, Pakistan Bar Council
Shoaib Shaheen, Chairman Legal Education Committee, Pakistan Bar Council

lacked the required infrastructure. He said PBC mentioned in the notice to QAU that if it would take fresh intake of students in 2016 and failed to submit their reports timely, they will be fined with Rs 5 million. Mr. Shaheen said PBC had asked QAU before a year to submit detailed report regarding law department but they did not take it serious.

He said they have also issued notices to Islamia University of Bahawalpur, Karachi University, Federal Urdu University Islamabad and Karachi campuses, Shah Abdul Latif Bhatai University, Shaheed Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto University and Bahauddin Zakria University. He said PBC asked to FUU to shut down the campus of Islamabad and shift their students to Karachi campus, failing to which Rs 2.25 million fine will be imposed. He said PBC asked Shah Abdul Latif Bhattai University to shut down its five affiliated law collages because one of them had taken classes in government school building and other three law collages have no infrastructure.

When The Educationist asked about total affiliated law collages with 28 law awarding universities he asked that there is no data compiled yet and nobody worked on it. He said no onward they are working on it and asked colleges and universities to provide complete data of their students and students will enrolled with PBC and registration fee would be 1000. He said PBC will monitor attendance of students and faculty to ensure their presence in the campuses. He said sometime they will make surprise check on law collages.

He added that if the law colleges and universities did not submit their reports, PBC has the authority to de-recognise the institute and impose fine of Rs 5 million to the law collage.

When asked about Punjab Bar Council’s request to extend implementation of the new law until 2018, Shoaib Shaheen said they would discuss the request of Punjab Bar Council in the next meeting. “It was not an agenda item in our today’s meeting, which took up the matter of failing criterion by some universities very seriously.”

The PBC Legal Education committee members included Muhammad Shoaib Shaheen (Chairman), Muhammad Maqsood Buttar (Member), Ch. Ishiaq Ahmad Khan (Member), Muhammad Aqil (Member), Mr. Abdul Sattar Khan (Member) and Muhammad Raheel Kamran Sheikh (Member)

To a query, the chairman said those students who would come from abroad after obtaining 3-year LLB degree they have to pass a test before being eligible for license.

Replying in another question, Shoaib Shaheen said if universities would send them a request regarding increasing students’ quantity from 100 to 150 they have to undergo a thorough inspection of the departmental facilities.

He said all the law degree awarding universities have been asked to provide complete data of students, equipment, teachers and attendance of students and faculty members. To a query regarding condition of number of affiliated law collages for a university, he said till now there was no limit of affiliated collages but from now onward we have asked all universities to stop giving affiliation to collages due to the fact that most law collages lacked infrastructure.

All 28 law degree awarding institutions of Pakistan have stopped admissions to the three years LLB degree programme and offering only 100 admissions to 5-year Latin, ‘Legum Baccalaureus (LLB) degree to intermediate students.

The students who planned to do LLB after BA they will be unable to join law education form now onward.

The Punjab University Law College has also stopped admissions to the three years LLB degree in all morning and evening degree programmes and taking applications for 5-year degree programme only. Earlier around 1200 students used to do LLB from PU annually.

Whats legal experts say about the implementation of Rules 2015:

Ch. Muhammad Hussain

Punjab Bar Council Vice Chairman Muhammad Hussain told The Educationist that (PBC) Legal Education Rule 1978 states ending up 3-year degree programme and starting 5-year programme in universities and affiliated collages. He said this was new rule of legal education 2015 promulgated across Pakistan. “Now only professionals would come to practice and all other who want to do law after the retirement or on part-time basis would be no more.” He said according to new rules only 5-year LLB degree will be reorganised and it would improve standard of their profession and only serious people will get admission and would join law as a profession. He said mushroom growth of lawyers would come to an end.

To a query, Ch. Hussain said 97,000 lawyers were currently registered with Punjab Bar Council and more than 3,000 were adding up to the number annually. He said Chief Justice of Pakistan took a suo moto action against fake

Ch. Muhammad Hussain, VC Punjab Bar Council
Ch. Muhammad Hussain, VC Punjab Bar Council

degrees of lawyers and now the Punjab government has allocated a funds for the verification of degrees because PBC was a non-profit organisation and they could not bear much expenses.

 

He said Rs 5,000 expense per degree verification was given by the Punjab government and degrees of last 20 years 1995-2015 were being verified, while so far they have sent session 2010-15 degrees to the Higher Education Commission for verification.

“Under the Legal Education Rules – 2015, the number of the students for the first year of LLB are restricted to 100 and only morning programme will be started, while the maximum students will be 35 in one class and three sessions are enough,” added the vice chairman of Punjab Bar Council.

Monitoring of Colleges in Punjab

Punjab Bar Council vice chairman Muhammad Hussain said he made a committee under his supervision which would inspect the collages whether they have qualified staff and facilities in the collage for students and will checked about the attendance of the students.

He said Legal Education Rules 2015 are for all Pakistan because Pakistan Bar Council is federal body so it will promulgated in all over Pakistan.

Universities

There are 28 PBC recognised law degree awarding institutions in Pakistan with PU at top of the list. According to PU spokesperson Khurram Shahzad as per their website there were a total 42 law collages affiliated with PU. Every collage has directive from PBC that only 100 students admitted in first year. This may make the number of PU and its affiliated students to 4300 this year.

Bahauddin Zakria University Multan Spokesperson Muhamamd Ahmed Khan said 24 law collages were affiliated with their university. This may make their number of students this year to 2500.

University of Sargodha has only 5 affiliated law colleges and interestingly it was offering only LLM degree and not the LLB.

Prof Dr Amanullah Malik

PU Law Collage Assistant Professor Dr. Amanullah Malik said according to the Legal Practitioner Act 1978 the Pakistan Bar Council regulates its bodies. He said the Legal Education Rules 2015 of PBC basically promote legal education, recognition of law collages, both internal and external law degrees.  He said now the academia has no choice except to opt this law. He said it the new rules were passed in 2015 but no one, even private collages and other advocates, challenged it in the court of law. Resultantly, now all institutions have to open admissions according to the new rules.

Dr. Amanullah Malik
Dr. Amanullah Malik

 

Dr. Amanullah said, “according to the expressed rules no new collage will be built, no new branch will be opened and no one could enroll more than 100 students in one year. They (academia) always support PBC and now they have accepted it and opted it and always will be with them because it’s a matter of quality of legal education. Nobody can challenge this rule because it is older than one year now and time has passed for filing petition against these rules.”

There are two major groups in Pakistan Bar Council. Asma Jehangir Group was backing this law while Hamid Khan Group wants that it should be implemented after 2 years or so on, although, they group too don’t oppose these rules in principal.

Rana Zia Abdur Rehman

LHC Bar Association President Rana Zia Abdul Rehman
LHC Bar Association President Rana Zia Abdul Rehman

Lahore High Court Bar Association President Rana Zia Abdur Rehman said there should be no restriction on education. “Those student who are now doing graduation and they have planned to join law profession, are seriously worried, however, overall this decision is good and it will give result in next three years, when the mushroom growth of lawyers will come to an end …..after three, four years and this should be stopped.”

Arshad Jahangir Jojah

Lahore Bar Association (LBA) President Arshad Jahangir Jojah said their parent body made the rules and it was their duty to abide by as per the Legal Education Rules 2015. Talking to The Educationist he said it was very good decision. To a query, he said there were a total 20,000 members of Lahore Bar Association.

Syed Azmat Ali Bukhari

When contacted Punjab Bar Council’s Legal Education Committee Member Syed Azmat Ali Bukhari told

Syed Azmat Bukhari Member Legal Education Committee, Punjab Bar Council
Syed Azmat Ali Bukhari, Member Legal Education Committee, Punjab Bar Council

The Educationist that they were very optimistic regarding their request to the Pakistan Bar Council to continue 3-year and 5-year programmes parallel until 2018. “There is flexibility in the rules and it is possible…..we will wait for two-three days and then we will also hold a meeting with PBC in this regard.” When asked if Pakistan Bar did not consider the request of Punjab Bar Council, what would be their reaction, Bukhari said, “it was their prerogative, however, we are optimistic.” He said the students who were doing BA at this time and they had planned to join legal education after BA, they were worried taking their career planning. Therefore, Punjab Bar has requested PBC for some relaxation until 2018, Mr. Bukhari elaborated.

List of Universities/Degree Awarding Institutions of Law Education in Pakistan:

Asma Jehangir
Asma Jehangir

(1)        University of the Punjab, Lahore

(2)        Karachi University, Karachi

(3)        University of Sindh, Hyderabad

(4)        University of Baluchistan, Quetta

(5)        Bahauddin Zakria University, Multan

(6)        Peshawar University, Peshawar

(7)        Gomal University, Dera Ismail Khan

Hamid Khan
Hamid Khan

(8)        Shah Abdul Latif University, Khairpur

(9)        Islamia University, Bahawalpur

(10)      Hamdard University, Karachi

(11)      International Islamic University, Islamabad

(12)      Lahore University of Management Sciences (LUMS)

(13)      University of Sargodha (w.e.f. 16-03-2006)

(14)      Government College University, Faisalabad (w.e.f. 04-07-2006)

(15)      Dadabhoy Institute of Higher Education, Karachi (w.e.f. 18-10-2006)

(16)       University of South Asia, Lahore (w.e.f. 27-03-2008)

(17)      Hazara University, Mansehra (w.e.f. 14-05-2008)

(18)      The University of Azad Jammu & Kashmir, Muzaffarabad (w.e.f. 01-07-2008)

(19)      The University of Gujrat, Gujrat (w.e.f. 04-04-2009)

(20)       The Islamia College (Chartered University), Peshawar (w.e.f. 20-07-2010)

(21)       The Abdul Wali Khan University, Mardan (provisional w.e.f. 19-09-2010)

(22)      Federal Urdu University of Arts, Science & Technology, Karachi (w.e.f. 07-11-2012)

……….[remained under suspension for violating the Rules from 05-05-2014 to 30-12-2015 when provisionally restored]

(23)      The University of Lahore, Lahore (w.e.f. 26-12-2013)

(24)       The Leads University, Lahore (provisional w.e.f. 14-03-2015)

(25)      Shaheed Benazir Bhutto Women University, Peshawar (provisional w.e.f. 14-03-2015 )

(26)      Bahria University, Islamabad (provisional w.e.f. 30-07-2015)

(27)      Qurtuba University, D. I. Khan (provisional w.e.f. 30-07-2015)

(28)      Shaheed Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto University of Law, Karachi. (Provisional w.e.f. 14-11-2015)

The PBC is collecting data on affiliated colleges of all degree awarding institutions.

(List Source: Pakistan Bar Council)

Warning:  No one is allowed to reprint or reproduce story except by mentioning the names of The Educationist and the reporter who contributed this report. 

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