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Taliban remove PhD holders, give BA pass to VC, 60 teachers resign

Taliban leaders have removed Muhammad Osman Baburi, a vice chancellor with a PhD from Kabul University in Afghanistan. He has been replaced by Muhammad Ashraf Ghairat, a less qualified Bachelor of Arts (BA) degree holder. 70 teachers have resigned from the university in protest of this incident. The incident took place last Wednesday, the news agency ANI reported.

Many have also expressed their displeasure on social media over the appointment of Ashraf Ghairat as the Vice Chancellor of Kabul’s largest university. Critics point to a tweet from Ashraf Ghairat last year. In that tweet, he supported the killing of the journalist.

According to the Afghan news agency Khama, people are outraged that one of the best universities in Afghanistan has hired someone with a bachelor’s degree, excluding an intellectual and an experienced PhD. Many Taliban members have also expressed outrage. Criticizing the appointment, they say, more qualified people could have been appointed than Ashraf Ghairat.

Ashraf has served in the education ministry of the previous government of Ghairat. He was the head of the evaluation committee of the universities in Afghanistan.

Earlier on Monday, the Taliban removed the name of former Afghan President Burhanuddin Rabbani from the name of the government university. They named it Kabul Education University. The university was named after Burhan Uddin Rabbani, who died in a suicide attack in 2009.

“Universities are intellectual property and cannot be named after a political or ethnic leader,” said a statement from Afghanistan’s Ministry of Higher Education.

Earlier, a video of Afghan Taliban Education Minister Sheikh Maulvi Nurullah Munir was widely shared on social media. In the video, he is heard talking about the relevance of higher education.

In a video released online, the Taliban’s education minister, Nurullah Munir, was heard to say, “Nowadays, a PhD or a master’s degree has no value. You see, none of the mullahs and Taliban in power have a PhD, an MA, or even a high school degree. But they are the best. ‘

Vice Chancellor of Kabul University in Afghanistan, Ph.D. Muhammad Osman Baburi has been fired by the Taliban administration. In his place, a leader with a BA degree named Muhammad Ashraf Gairat has been appointed as the Vice-Chancellor. NDTV reported that at least 60 teachers, including professors and associate professors, resigned in protest of the appointment of the new vice-chancellor on Wednesday. Many Taliban leaders have also opposed the appointment of Muhammad Ashraf Gairat. Protests continue on social media. Critics are sharing Ashraf Gairat’s tweet last year, “Singing for the killing of journalists.”

According to The Khama Press News Agency, a local media outlet in Afghanistan, people have become angry over the removal of an experienced vice-chancellor with a meritorious and PhD degree from a leading university in Afghanistan and the appointment of a young bachelor’s degree holder. Many Taliban leaders from the general public have also criticized the new government’s decision.

Last Monday, the Taliban renamed the government university named after former Afghan President Burhanuddin Rabbani as Kabul Education University. Burhanuddin Rabbani was killed in a suicide bombing at his residence in 2009.

The newly-appointed Taliban education minister, Sheikh Maulvi Naruddin Munir, has said that PhDs and master’s degrees are of no value.

The newly-appointed education minister said PhD and master’s degrees are of no value in Afghanistan because mullahs do not have these degrees but they have the most power and they are the ‘greatest’, an international media report said on Wednesday.

“PhD and master’s degrees are of no value today,” he said. Mullahs and Taliban leaders have come to power. They don’t even have a PhD, master’s or high school degree. Yet they have the most power and they are the ‘greatest’.

Teaching has started behind the scenes for male and female students of private universities in Afghanistan since last Monday.

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