Faiez Hassan Seyal | March 1990
There are scores and scores of Pakistanis residing in the U.S.A. or Europe. Majority of them are highly educated, aptly qualified and well-versed in Sundry sciences and technologies. They are patriotic and in addition have a desire to serve Pakistan in all sincerity and devotion. Their services can be hired provided they are provided with lucrative opportunities of earning dignified and honorable remuneration.
A brief resume of the present situation is sketched below for your assessment:
- A country graduate utilizes 16 years to achieve his post-graduate degree. But the duration for the same in America is not less than 18 years. It means that the graduate of the later type is really an M.Phil.
- According to FPSC’s regulations, a 2 years experience relaxation is granted to an M.Phil and a 4 years relaxation is extended to a Ph.D. This means that only the Time Factor not the cost involved, is taken into account. Ph.d. and M.Phil degrees are research degrees (as it is considered in U.S.) which is experience in itself. It seems that FPSC is only concerned in the time factor that is why they are granted experience relaxation but it is surprising that the monetary side is neglected by the FPSC.
- Coming to the Monetary side of the picture. I may like to remind the authorities that any student spending only one year in any American University undergoes a burden of $ 16,000 annually on the average i.e. Rs 352,000 in Pak currency. For a normal course of two years the amount comes to Rs 704,000. It may also be pointed out that the travelling charges and initial admission process fee and the opportunity cost of the time spent in admission process are extra in this amount.
- If it was an easy job to acquire a foreign degree every tom, dick and harry could have done this job. But as you see, such graduates can be counted on finger’s tips. None knows better than you what malpractice, unfair means and corrupt mechanics are rampant in our indigenous society.
After the classification of the aforementioned point, I now venture to put forward certain recommendations to ease the situation and improve the anomaly faced at present.
- Ordinarily, a M.A. from any national university is offered grade 17 (B.P.S.) even if he does not possess any experience.
- If FPSC is in search of better intellect, a candidates studded with an American Master’s degree might have been considered entitled for B.P.S. 18 (to cover the monetary side) and two extra increments (to cover up the opportunity cost of two extra years spent in the degree program).
- In case he is M.Phil, 6-8 extra increments might be added alongwith B.P.S. 18 to cover up monetary as well as opportunity cost.
- A Ph.D is recommended for B.P.S 19 plus the time spent in getting the degree should be considered as experience, upto maximum of four years. Therefore four additional increments should be given in recognition of four year seniority. The Grade 19 will compensate for the real cost involved and four years seniority and increments will substitute the opportunity cost of those years spent in education which could have been used for earning as well as getting experience.
- The opportunity cost of those years spent should never be ignored, along with the money cost. A bare two years experience relaxation is certainly no compensation for the same. If opportunity cost is added to the total, a two year degree’s total come to Rs 10,0000. In the present situation it does not make sense to spend Rs 10,00000 to get two years experience relaxation. According to present policy, a person will be better off to get two years experience while working and making money rather than investing a giant amount in foreign degree. In another words the present policies are discouraging people to invest in human capital.
Keeping the suggestions in view, my fervent appeal to FPSC is to reevaluate the policy. Naturally it would create a healthy attitude and praise worthy candidates would be at the beck and call of FPSC. This reevaluation may not mitigate the numerous costs but it would definitely be a good step in formulating future policies.