Honest Architects and Engineers are the need of the day – Chief Minister KPK

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By Ar. Marwat Khan Orakzai
(Former Chairman IAP-Peshawar Chapter)

The three-day mega event IAPEX-2015 was held at Pearl Continental Hotel Peshawar on 24th, 25th and 26th May, 2015. The following programs were part of this event:

  • Students’ Jamboree at CECOS University
  • Construction Materials Exhibition
  • Conference and presentation of papers
  • 3rd cycle of IAP Kausar Bashir Ahmad Award-2015

The Students’ Jamboree was inaugurated on 23rd May, 2015 at the CECOS University Campus Hayatabad, Peshawar. Ar. Mohammad Khalid was the convener of the program. The chief guest of the inauguration ceremony was the Vice Chancellor of CECOS University of IT and Emerging Sciences, Professor Dr. Riaz Khattak. The students were very enthusiastic because this was the first time that the Students’ Jamboree was held in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. Ar. Mohammad Khalid welcomed the guests and shed light on the importance of Students’ Jamboree. IAP President Ar. Jahangir Khan, in his speech, highlighted the contribution of IAP & BAE for architecture education and society. He thanked administration of CECOS University for providing facilities and financial support to the students of Jamboree, who were invited from all over Pakistan.

Vice Chancellor CECOS University said that besides the Chief Guest, he was also a Chief Host, because he was hosting the programme. He encouraged the IAP Peshawar Chapter and students of Jamboree and extended full cooperation to the students as well as faculty involved in the Jamboree workshop. After the speech of Dr. Riaz Khattak, students Mr. Adan Khan & Haziq Khan presented an amazing sand animation, which was appreciated by the spellbound audience. A student of 3rd Year Architecture at CECOS University, Noman Sherpao, presented a humorous poem about jobless architects, which was also well-received. At the conclusion, Chairman of IAP Peshawar Chapter, Ar. Majid Khan, presented a vote of thanks.

The formal program of IAPEX -2015 Peshawar was started on 24 May 2015. Ar. Rehan Chaudhry was the convener of the IAPEX and Ar. Ihsan Subhani was the convener of Graphics, Media and Printing. The Jamboree students started their workshop at CECOS University Peshawar, and the Architects Conference and the construction material exhibition was inaugurated at Pearl Continental Hotel Peshawar.

The Conference was inaugurated by the Honorable Chief Guest Ar. Irfan Muhsin Urfi, a renowned architect of KPK. Chairman PCATP, Sikandar Hayat Khan, and President IAP, Jahangir Khan Sherpao, awarded the shields to Chairman IAP Islamabad Chapter Ar. Naveed Aslam, Chairman IAP Lahore Chapter, Ar. Ahmad Pervaiz Mirza, Chairman BAE Ar. Murad Jamil, Ar. Farida Abdul Ghaffar, Architect Ejaz Ahed & Architect Prof. Dr. Noman Ahmed. Thereafter, Architect Farida Abdul Ghaffar gave a detailed presentation on the IAP-KBA Award named in honor of Prof. Ar. Kauser Bashir Ahmad, followed by the speech of Prof. Dr. Noman Ahmed. Prof. Dr. Noman Ahmed shed light on the life of Ar. Kauser Bashir Ahmad. He also highlighted the contribution of Kauser Bashir Ahmad for society and architecture education.

At the end of the ceremony on the first day, the Chief Guest Ar. Irfan Mohsin Urfi awarded the Kausar Bashir Ahmad Award to a student of Karachi University, Murtaza Kanchawala, who stood first out of the 16 entries from all over Pakistan. The KBA Award is given every year to a student of Architecture who had completed outstanding thesis work on a socially-responsive architectural project. The first day inauguration program and KBA Award ceremony was finished on a vote of thanks by Chairman IAP-PC Ar. Majid Khan. He thanked all the senior architects who had come from all over Pakistan. Following, the Chief Guest, President of IAP and Chairman PCATP with other delegates formally inaugurated the construction materials exhibition at the Pearl Continental Hotel, Peshawar.

On the second day of IAPEX-15, the conference started at the Hotel, while the Students’ Jamboree workshop and construction material’s exhibition were running parallel since morning.

In the conference, 8 papers were presented in 2 sessions – 4 in each session – by scholars on the theme of “Role of an Architect”. In the first session the 1st paper was presented by Ar. Kamran Mufti on “Role of an Architect in Design Process using Digital Medium”. He elaborated on the importance of digital media and presented a comparative and critical study of the works of different architects and highlighted their merits and demerits. The second presenter was Ar. Mohammad Waqas from COMSATS University Rawalpindi. His topic was “Architect – a Social Reformer”. He deliberated on the role of an architect, who may serve for society as reformer. After the paper of Mohammad Waqas the third presenter was Ar. Shaukat Sharar who spoke on the topic “The role of the Architect in Contemporary World-experiences”. The fourth and final presenter of this session was Ar. Faisal Arshad. His topic of presentation was “Deliverables in Architecture – A Journey of Two Decades in Varied Roles of Practice”. His discussion was based on four primary subjects; Intent, Knowledge, Skill & Deliverables of the architect. He discussed how an architect may extend benefit to his client through valuable ideas.

At the end of this session the Chief Guest awarded shields to all the presenters. Member of the National Assembly Engr. Hamid-ul-Haq distributed the shields. MNA Engr. Hamid-ul-Haq also shed light on the role and responsibilities of architects for the development of society. He said that he will convey the messages and suggestions of honorable speakers and presenters to the Government and decision makers.

The four presenters of the second session presented their paper on different topics. Engr. Imtiaz Hussain Gillani, Vice Chancellor University of Engineering and Technology Peshawar was the Chief Guest for this session. The first presenter was Dr. Shahid Ahmad Rajput, who talked about Conservation of Historic Buildings and the Role of an Architect . He is an Archaeologist, Art Historian and Fulbright Fellow Professor in Dept. of Architecture and Design COMSATS Institute of Information Technology (CIIT) Islamabad. He gave presentation on preservation of Wah Gardens near Hassan-abdal and Wah Cantt. The second presenter of this session was Moeez Ahmad from Lahore. He deliberated on the beauty of vernacular architecture of Lahore. He said that culture, tradition and climate play a very important role in architecture of an area. He talked about the history, rich traditions, values and culture of Lahore. The third scholar of this session was Khwaja Zulfiqar, who presented his paper on the role of an architect in conservation. He highlighted the conservation process and its importance for the coming generation. He gave his presentation on “Restoration and Conservation of Muzaffarabad Fort Azad Kashmir”. The fourth and final presenter was Ar. Shabir Ullah Qureshi, Chairman Architecture Department, University of Engineering and Technology Abbottabad Campus. His topic was “Role of Architects in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa – The Analytical Synthesis”. He spoke about the historical background of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and its culture and discussed different eras, including the Gandhara Civilization , Colonial Architecture, and the tangible and intangible heritage of the region.

At the conclusion, the Chief Guest distributed shields to the presenters. In his concluding speech, Engr. Imtiaz Hussain Gillani put responsibility of development on both engineers and architects and said that although they had professional rivalry, they cannot be separated from each other. Both should support each other. The program was concluded by Ar. Tahir Khattak who was the convener for the Conference as well as the Stage Secretary.

The Conference was followed by a “Cultural Night”, which was arranged by the students and convener of the program.

On the 3rd day, Architect Tahir Khattak introduced the speakers. After the introduction, 3 speakers gave their presentation on the same theme. The first presenter, Ar. Mariam Nizam, was from Karachi. Her topic of presentation was “Changing Perspectives – The Role of An Architect”. She gave a detailed presentation on historical monuments of different religions and era. Her presentation was followed by that of Ar. Mohammad Jan, who presented his paper on “Peshawar – a City without Command and Control”. He talked about the different administrative units which run Peshawar city and said that the Devolution Plan eroded the concept of a unified command and today no body or institution stands responsible for the city affairs as a Central Command Authority. He described the glorious history of Peshawar and informed that by-laws were not being followed through today, which could control the development. The next presenter was Ar. Mohammad Khalid. His topic of presentation was “Role of the Architect in Design Leadership”. He stated that architects should have the power or leading role on provincial and federal levels to assist the Government to achieve a level of design excellence and sustainability performance in the built environment. He pointed out that in Peshawar and all District / Tehsil councils of the KPK province 98% of the buildings are being designed by the quacks working under the patronage of building control agencies. Hence, the quackery is strengthening day by day while the profession of architecture is weakening. Mementos were presented to speakers at the conclusion of the session.

The second session of the 3rd Day started with the introduction of guests and speakers by Ar. Tahir Khattak. The first speaker was Ar. Fida Mohammad. He presented his paper on “Collective Role of Designers in Built Environment”. He talked about the skyline and landscape of Islamabad. The final and most important presentation was of Ar. Ejaz Ahad on “How Architecture Firms Succeed”. He said that success was a journey, not a destination and that there was no replacement for hard work. He pointed out that very few architects made it big before reaching 50 years of age. The Chief Guest for this session was Senator Noman Wazir. He distributed the shields among the speakers. The session was concluded by Ar. Tahir Khattak.

The closing ceremony started after the arrival of the Chief Guest, Chief Minister of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Pervez Khattak and guests Mr. Inayat Ullah, Minister of Local Government and Senator Noman Wazir. The ceremony started with the recitation of Holy Quran. Ar. Tahir Khattak gave a detail briefing on the three days conference, building material exhibition and Students’ Jamboree to the Chief Minister. After the speech of Ar. Tahir Khattak, Ar. Mansoor Ahmad highlighted the problems of Architects of KPK. He gave a presentation on the problems faced by architects of KP. Thereafter, President IAP Ar. Jahangir Khan Sherpao highlighted the role of IAP nationally and internationally. He explained how IAP contributed to the international community as well as Pakistan through its four respective chapters and international efforts. He mentioned that IAP held 6 key posts on international level, and had affiliations with UIA, CAA, ARCASIA and SAARCH. He said that this was due to the hard work of IAP members and their positive role and efforts both inside and outside Pakistan.

A final speech was made by Chief Minister KPK. He welcomed the comments of architects and promised to extend cooperation to them. He said that a working group of private and government architects and engineers would be formed to ascertain qualitative work at all levels. He pointed out that corruption in the form of commission was a curse for society and that he would try to stop it at any cost. Honest architects and engineers are the need of the day and the Government encourages them to come forward and put their share in the development of the country. He mentioned that Fort Bala-Hisar would be opened for citizens and tourists and will be converted into a museum park. Every city has a centre and this would be the centre for Peshawar. He also mentioned that Central Prison Peshawar would be converted into a park and would be part of Fort Bala-Hisar.

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