ISLAMABAD: Allama Iqbal Open University (AIOU) has decided to work out a plan to provide vocational training to prisoners all over the country.
Initially, tailoring centers will be set up in the jails for the enrolled prisoners, so that they get the skill-based education free of cost, the decision to this was taken by the Vice Chancellor Prof. Dr. Shahid Siddiqui on a request received from the prisoners of Haripur Jail, KPK.
Currently, there are 161 AIOU’s enrolled students in this jail. It was agreed that the University will provide sewing machines and other stitching equipment.
The University will also depute instructors for this purpose, said Dr. Zahid Majeed who has been appointed as a Focal person to undertake the necessary arrangements.
A process is also being undertaken to prepare an academic course for providing tailoring education. The trained prisoners will be awarded certificate of tailor Master.
The Vice Chancellor wishes that the jails should work as correction centers, so that prisoners should be able to live a respectable life after completing their detention period.
Currently, there are over 1000 enrolled prisoners in different jails of the country.
The University has improved its existing facilities in jails throughout the country providing free education to prisoners, as a part of its endeavor taking care of marginalized sections of the society. The free education is available to prisoners from Matric to BA-level.
The process of taking admissions has been simplified. Prospectus and others allied material were sent to Jail authorities free of cost, enabling the prisoners to join the University for carrying out their future education.
In the efforts of increasing enrollment rate among inmates in wake of the University’s motivation campaign, Dr Shahid Siddiqui has visited jails in Karachi, Lahore, Quetta and Rawalpindi in recent years and held discussion with jails’ authorities on the procedural issues.
He also wrote letters to Inspectors General, Prisons of the four provinces seeking their support in implementing in the proposed educational plan. – NNI