J&K scholar faces humiliation at Pak university

J&K scholar faces humiliation at Pak university

 While the successful completion of Ph D by a Pakistani female scholar at Kashmir University here has brought her laurels back home and is making headlines here in the last two weeks, a Kashmiri student who had gone to pursue higher education to Pakistan under SAARC exchange program has faced ‘torture, threats and humiliation’ at the hands of his guide there.

Ishrat Naveed, a scholar from Soibugh in central Kashmir’s Budgam district had left the Valley a few years back to pursue his cherished dream of completing Ph D in Bio-Technology.

He chose prestigious Qaud-i-Azam University in Islamabad and he managed to get admission under the SAARC exchange agreement.

However, little did he know that his experience to pursue higher studies in Pakistan would be tormenting. “The way my supervisor/guide, Dr Tariq Mehmood, (Assistant Professor, Department of Plant Sciences, Qaud-i-Azam University) behaved during my research is disappointing and difficult to narrate,” Naveed told Deccan Herald in an emailed statement from Islamabad.

“He (Dr Mehmood) emotionally black mailed, tortured and harassed me. He took all the research samples in his custody in my absence. He used to accuse me that I am an Indian spy who is on espionage mission to Pakistan,” the young scholar claimed.

“My research samples which included experimental design and optimized protocols were distributed among favourite students of Dr Mehmood. The stolen samples including transgenic plants, expression vectors and clones are worth millions,” Naveed claimed.

He had never visited Kashmir since he left for Pakistan in early 2010. “My commitment with Dr Mehmood was that after completion of my degree I will move back to India. The practical research I carried out in Plant Biochemistry and Molecular Biology laboratory received funding of 9.5 million Pakistani rupees. But My supervisor evaluated me on regional basis not on merit,” a dejected Naveed said.

Asked in an email query why he was being maltreated by his supervisor, he said, “The reason behind this worst humiliation was to grab money (9.5 million) and research articles. I fought for my rights in Islamabad and lodged a complaint against my supervisor with the University authorities and Higher Education Commission for justice.

However, they have not taken any action till date,” he said.

In his absence from home for more than three years, Naveed’s younger sister passed away. “When I handed over the thesis to my supervisor for submission in December 2011, my sister who had cardiac problems was waiting for me. I was scheduled to reach home but my supervisor did not allow me. My beloved sister breathed her last in a Srinagar hospital. Her last words were ‘my brother not returned from Pakistan and I cannot wait now anymore,’” he said.

Despite repeated attempts to contact Qaud-i-Azam University Vice Chancellor via email for his version, he wasn’t available for the comment.

Recently Nadia Mehrdin, from Kasur area of Pakistan’s Punjab province became the first Pakistani student to complete her Ph D from the University of Kashmir. Mehrdin had joined the university’s Institute of Kashmir Studies around four years ago under the SAARC programme to pursue the course in medieval history of Kashmir.

“I’m going back with good memories. It was my dream to visit the Valley and study here,” an elated Mehrdin had said. She was all praise for J&K Governor N N Vohra, who is also the chancellor of the Kashmir University.

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