When plagiarism is not plagiarism: University of Peshawar allows 19% plagiarism to protect plagiarising Vice Chancellor

When plagiarism is not plagiarism

The Vice-Chancellor of the University of Peshawar,  Dr Azmat Hayat Khan was found guilty of plagiarism by a three-member committee of the Higher Education Commission that was constituted to probe the matter. The Higher Education Commission had submitted its report to the Governor of Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa who is also the Chancellor of the university.

For apparently political reasons, no action has so far been taken against the Vice Chancellor. Instead the University went on the attack. First they attacked the complainant, Mohammad Zubair, an assistant professor at the UoP Law College. They  suspended him and have now dismissed him and are going through a paper exercise to strip him of his law degree. Now they have attacked the Higher Education Commission for finding their beloved Vice Chancellor guilty. The defence of the Vice Chancellor is ingenious. First they have objected to the procedures followed by the Commission in not interrogating the Vice Chancellor. Since they felt this argument was probably a little weak they then redefined plagiarism so that the Vice Chancellor’s plagiarism was no longer plagiarism!!

The University has effectively created a Cheaters Charter. It has reinvented and redefined a plagiarism “threshold” of allowable copying as being 19% for scholarly articles and 25% for theses. And since – they claim – the Vice Chancellor only cheated to the extent of copying 18% of his book from others – what he did was not plagiarism!!

From being a case of the Vice Chancellor’s plagiarism this has now escalated to become a case of blatant corruption at the highest levels of the University and not excluding the Chancellor – who is of course merely taking a political position as the Governor of Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa.

The ethical standards of the University of Peshawar are beginning to stink.

Pakistan Today reports:

The University of Peshawar issued a clarification on a news item pertaining to plagiarism stating certain elements from a political group were involved. …. 

The HEC thus already had jumped to conclusions without inquiring into the matter which shows a partial approach and mala fide intentions. This in fact was the only inquiry in history in which the author under investigation was not called before the committee. The plagiarism policy of HEC point number eight section“E“ clearly reads that the author under investigation must be provided opportunity to justify the originality of their concepts. …..

The HEC Plagiarism policy states plagiarism cases be dealt by respective universities and the threshold is setup by the concerned University in light of the Quality Assurance guidelines of HEC. The percentage of allowed threshold decided by meeting of the Advance Studies and Research Board of University of Peshawar in light of HEC Quality Assurance guidelines, in its meeting held on 25/11/2009 was 19% allowed matching (threshold) for published research articles and 25% for thesis.
The plagiarism allegations against the Vice Chancellor were looked in HEC recommended software and the result was shown to be 18%. This is the same software which is being used all over the country and by HEC. The same document was checked manually and the matching percentage of Kulwant Kaur Book “Pak Afghan relations” to that of Dr Azmat Hayat Khan book was 17%.  …….

The press release stated the case was in court and an unbiased decision would be issued because the author would get a chance to explain his point of view and the facts of the matter. It said the University of Peshawar considered the HEC’s recommendation of a penalty and the press conference organized by them as contempt of court (against PHC decision) and will take the case to legal corners. It claims that the victimizing campaign is spear-headed by Zubair Mehsud. The press release denied Zubair was being targeted, as claimed by a newsreport, for raising his voice against the VC.
The press release said ex-Law College faculty member Zubair had been terminated for engaging in political activities against the VC’s directives and the used of defamatory language when issued show cause notice to explain his position on the matter.

But the demands on the Governor to replace the tainted Vice Chancellor are continuing to grow.

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2 Responses to “When plagiarism is not plagiarism: University of Peshawar allows 19% plagiarism to protect plagiarising Vice Chancellor”

  1. ALIGARH MUSLIM UNIVERSITY ACT 1920 « advocatemmmohanbareacts Says:

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  2. akhtar amin Says:

    The similarity index and threshold for research thesis and books is set up by the Universities in Light of Guidelines of the HEC. VC had done P. hD in 1990 and even though HEC has been formed in 2002, Prof. Dr. Azmat Hayat Khan book is within the required similarity index and percentage. University of Peshawar threshold was set and accepted by HEC in 2009. The Mudslinging on VC started in March 2011 after in February he took a decision against the complainant faculty member. In past we had VC`s from Area Study Centers. We must revisit or data rather than going for an all out notorious attitude and selective English vocabulary plot. Those who deserves to become Vice Chancellor`s achieve the slot and those who want to force their case, take their wish to graves.

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