Aug 20 - 26, 2007

Minister for Communication and Works Punjab Ch Zaheer-ud-Din Khan inaugurated a three-week training program on "Community Empowerment through Livestock Development and Credit" at the University of Veterinary and Animal Sciences Lahore.

This training program has been arranged by the Institute of Continuing Education and Extension (ICE&E) in collaboration with the United Nations Development Program (UNDP) and Nestle Pakistan to train 2nd batch of master trainers, who will work in rural areas for training and development of rural women as lady livestock workers (LLWs).

Addressing the inaugural ceremony, the minister for communication said that the future of the country's hinges on development of livestock. He called for raising the best breeds of buffaloes and cows to enhance productivity of livestock. He lauded the UVAS initiative to train master trainers and lady livestock workers in collaboration with the UNDP and Nestle Pakistan. Vice-Chancellor Prof Dr Muhammad Nawaz highlighted the academic, research and developmental activities of the UVAS. He said that the university was initiating new graduate programs in dairy technology, fisheries and aquaculture, poultry, microbiology and bioinformatics and MBA in life sciences. The UVAS is already offering Doctor of Veterinary Medicine (DVM) graduate program and MPhil in 13 disciplines and PhD in 11 subjects, he said. He said that the UVAS had developed linkages with national and international institutions and industry for improvement in quality of education and research for overall development of the livestock sector. He said that after getting training at the UVAS, the master trainers and lady livestock workers would contribute to community empowerment.

He said that livestock contributed 50 per cent to the agriculture GDP and 11 per cent to the national GDP. He also spoke about the constraints in the development of the livestock sector and remedial steps taken by the UVAS in this regard. He said that the UVAS had established a WTO Quality Control Lab to test the food of animal origin according to WTO standards for export and import purposes. UNDP Program Coordinator Sajid Baloch, Nestle representatives Syed Fakhar Ahmad and Akmal Saeed and ICE&E Director Prof Dr Zafar Iqbal Chaudhry also spoke on the occasion.

Moreover, a two-month training programme for village livestock workers also began in the University of Veterinary and Animal Sciences in Lahore. Vice-Chancellor Prof Dr Muhammad Nawaz inaugurated the training programme arranged by the Institute of Continuing Education and Extension of the UVAS with the Livestock and Dairy Development Board (LDDB). LDDB Deputy Project Coordinator Dr Naveed Niazi and university professors were also present in the ceremony.

The vice-chancellor said the livestock sector had a great potential. "We should focus on the areas of nutrition, marketing, value addition and control of emerging and re-emerging diseases of animals. Pakistan is among the top five milk-producing countries." He also called for a proper collection and processing of milk to avoid its waste. He urged training participants to learn maximum practical skills in their training in the university so that they could contribute the maximum in the field.

The training participants would be given hands-on training in artificial insemination and basic treatment (first aid) of animal diseases. Meanwhile, the Academic Council of the University of Veterinary and Animal Sciences Lahore in its 15th meeting approved initiation of five new Undergraduate four years B.S. (Hons) degree programs and four postgraduate degree programs this year.

The meeting presided over by vice-chancellor Prof Dr Muhammad Nawaz also approved of eight new diploma courses to be offered by the university with the cooperation of the National Vocational and Technical Education Commission (NAVTEC). The new Undergraduate Programs are: B.S, (Hons.) Applied Microbiology, B.S. (Hons.) Fisheries and Aquaculture, B.S. (Hons.) Poultry Science, B.S. (Hons.) Bioinformatics and B.S. (Hons) Dairy Technology. The Postgraduate Programs are: Masters of Business Management Administration (MBA) in Life Sciences, M.Phil and Ph.D in Wildlife and Ecosystem, M.Phil and Ph.D in Fisheries and Aquaculture and M.Phil in Dairy Technology. All these programs will be offered from this year. The diploma courses are Artificial Insemination and Reproductive Health Management of Dairy Animals, Quality Farming, Poultry Farm Management and Disease Protection, Animal Nutrition Management Fisheries and Aquarium Management, Dairy Herd Management, Meat Production and Processing and Pet Care Management.

Addressing the meeting, the vice-chancellor said that these programmes are being initiated to provide urgently needed manpower to launch the present government-initiatives for white and blue revolutions in the country for food security and safety.