University of Home Economics (UHE) in collaboration with Bargad organized a vice-chancellors conference on equity and inclusion of marginalized communities in higher education: opportunities and challenges.
The conference was attended by Provincial Minister of Human Rights and Minorities Affairs Department, Ejaz Alam Augustine; 12 universities’ vice-chancellors along with experts and representatives from marginalized communities including minorities, differently-abled persons and transgender persons.
On the occasion Ejaz Augustine, Human Rights & Minorities Affairs Department announced that the government is introducing a bill to protect the rights of transgender persons in Punjab.
He said that the government’s special quotas would result in the inclusion of minority, differently-abled and transgender youth in the mainstream of higher education.
He urged that we also need ethical strength to support our marginalized groups.
Prof. Dr. Fazal Ahmad Khalid, Chairman of Punjab Higher Education Commission (PHEC) said that the commission would work through the recommendations of the VCs’ conference as we need the universities to develop quality human resources who are innovative and also sensitive to the social and community needs of tolerance among youth.
While addressing the conference Prof. Dr. Kanwal Ameen Vice-Chancellor, University of Home Economics, Lahore emphasized the social and cultural equal acceptance of students from marginalized communities on campus.
She further said that there is a need to ensure equal opportunities in higher education and experts should introduce a minority friendly curriculum in the country that protects the beliefs of all the citizens.
Prof. Dr. Kanwal Ameen and Ms. Sabiha Shaheen, Executive Director Bargad stressed the need for inclusive development in higher education.
This is also aligned with Pakistan’s commitments made under the sustainable development goals 4, 5, 10 & 16 which aim at Quality Education; Gender Equality; Reduced Inequality and Peace, Justice & Strong Institutions.
Vice Chancellors Prof. Dr. Asghar Zaidi, Prof. Dr. Javed Akram, Prof. Dr. Bushra Mirza, Prof. Dr. Muhammad Afzal, Prof. Dr. Rukhsana Kausar, Prof. Dr. Muhammad Zakria Zakar, Prof. Dr. Nasim Ahmad, Prof. Dr. Robina Farooq, Prof. Dr. Sarfraz Khurshid, Prof. Dr. Saiqa Imtiaz Asif, Prof. Dr. Talat Naseer Pasha (S.I.) and Dr. Robeena Zakir addressed the conference and participated in a round table discussion.