Scholarship struggle

Since its inception, Sukkur IBA University has stood as a bea­con of merit, quality, and excel­lence in education, particularly for underprivileged students across Sindh. However, recent develop­ments have cast a shadow over its commitment to upholding these values. The departure of found­ing Vice Chancellor Nisar Ahmed Siddique seems to have signalled a departure from the university’s dedication to excellence, partic­ularly evident in the administra­tion’s handling of the Sindh Talent Hunt Program (STHP).

The STHP has long been hailed as a lifeline for talented yet financially disadvantaged students, providing them with the opportunity to pur­sue undergraduate degrees on ful­ly funded scholarships. This pro­gram, covering not only tuition but also monthly stipends, hostel ac­commodations, and essential aca­demic materials, has been instru­mental in nurturing the potential of countless deserving individuals. However, under the tenure of the new vice-chancellor, the program’s integrity has been compromised.

It is deeply disheartening to learn that deserving students enrolled in the STHP are being denied their rightful entitlements. The absence of monthly stipends and hostel ac­commodations, which were once essential components of the pro­gram, has plunged these students into a myriad of challenges. Many find themselves struggling to afford private accommodations, which are prohibitively expensive and place an undue financial burden on al­ready marginalized individuals.

The Sindh government’s gener­ous allocation of Rs. 13 billion to­wards the STHP underscores the importance and value placed on providing equal educational op­portunities for all. However, the failure of the university adminis­tration to ensure the proper distri­bution of these funds reflects a dis­regard for the welfare and future prospects of deserving students.

It is imperative that the con­cerned authorities take swift and decisive action to rectify this injus­tice. The students enrolled in the STHP deserve more than empty promises and bureaucratic indiffer­ence. They deserve the full extent of the support and resources prom­ised to them, as outlined in the pro­gram’s mandate. As advocates for equity and excellence in education, we must raise our voices in soli­darity with these students and de­mand accountability from the uni­versity administration. The denial of basic rights such as monthly sti­pends and hostel accommodations not only undermines the integrity of the STHP but also perpetuates systemic inequality and denies de­serving individuals the opportunity to fulfil their potential.

The time has come for the vice-chancellor and all relevant stake­holders to prioritize the needs and well-being of the students. Uphold­ing excellence means more than just maintaining a reputation; it requires a steadfast commitment to ensuring equal opportunities for all, regardless of background or circumstance. It is incumbent upon the university administration to honour its obligations and grant students the reasonable facilities they are entitled to under the STHP. Anything less would be a betrayal of the principles upon which Suk­kur IBA University was founded.


Khairpur Mirs.

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