Chief Executive approves steps for IT promotion
Executive Gen Pervez Musharraf has approved the setting up of distance learning centres in 10 major cities of the country during 2000-2001 to promote information technology (IT).
Official sources said that proposals for the rapid development of IT had earlier been submitted to the chief executive by the National Commission for Science and Technology, ministry of science and technology.
The sources said the government would spend Rs220 million for setting up the centres, which would use facilities provided by Allama lqbal Open University and Pakistan Television in learning technologies. Names of the 10 cities where the project would be launched would soon be decided by the ministry of science and technology, the sources said. They added that the chief executive had also approved another proposal of the commission which advised the government to set up IT centres for training unemployed or underemployed engineers, scientists and other professionals. This project would cost total Rs 20 million.
The sources said specialized centres for training master trainers would also be set up in five major cities of the country, and added that Rsl5O million had been allocated for this purpose. They said that for the provision of Internet and its infrastructure to all universities of Pakistan and later to colleges and research and development organizations in the public sector, Rs 55 million had been earmarked, by the ministry of science and technology.
The sources said a scholarship(Qarze-i-Hasna scheme) had also been approved by Gen Musharraf, which would be launched, at both undergraduate and postgraduate levels, for studying computer science, electrical and electronics engineering. The project would cost RslOO million, they added. The sources said that computer literacy would also be promoted at school level throughout the country and added that the project would cost Rs 500 million.
They said that the chief executive had also approved the setting up of a national testing agency for standardisation testing and certification of IT professionals. For this purpose, Rsl00 million had been earmarked. They said four information technology institutes would be set up, one each in selected universities of Punjab, Sindh, the NWFP and Balochistan, which would cost Rs300 million. The sources said Rs 655 million had approved by the chief executive for the development of IT infrastructure. Under the programme, software technology parks would be established in Karachi, Lahore and Islamabad in the first phase and later in other major cities of the country.