Glimpses of Alhamra Cultural Complex, Lahore
Punjab hosts a resplendent display of inter-provincial harmony among the high achievers of Pakistan.
Solar lamps, worth Rs 4.4 billion to be imported from China for the high achievers.
The CM lashes out at the federal government and the previous government of the Punjab
A wave of revolution in Information Technology and education led by the incumbent government of the Punjab halted at Alhamra Cultural complex on December 18, 2012. The Chief Minister, Shahbaz Sharif (also known as CM Punjab and ‘Khaadam-e-Aala’ – minister serving the people) addressed high achievers of provincial boards of intermediate and secondary education in Pakistan. This was the last ceremony in connection with the Chief Minister’s ‘educational drive’ including different merit-based scholarships for high achievers, e-youth initiative, IT labs in different cities, Daanish Schools in the less developed parts of the province and schemes for recruiting young graduates as ‘paid-internees’. Prominent leaders form the Pakistan Muslim League – Nawaz (N) including Ahsan Iqbal and Zaeem Qadri also attended the ceremony. The Vice Chancellor of University of the Punjab (Professor Dr Mujahid Kamran), Government College University (Professor Dr. Muhammad Khaleeq-ur-Rahman) and principals along with teachers from different colleges also attended the ceremony. The event was hosted by Noor ul Hassan, a renowned anchor person of Pakistan.
The CM distributed cash among achievers of different provincial boards. Before he was invited to the stage, speeches were delivered in both, provincial and national language by high achievers from all the provinces of Pakistan.
From Khyber Pakhtoonkhwaan (KPK), Peshawar
- With each token of encouragement from the Punjab government I want to succeed again and again.
Hard work, determination and courage made me a ‘high achiever’. Droplets of sweat used to mess my paper due to sporadic load shedding in the summer, but ‘faith’ can defeat all problems. Despite all odds, I want to study and achieve new heights. The Punjab government has established an unprecedented ‘education model’ for other governments to emulate. Ceremonies like these unite students from different provinces and make ‘diversity’ the strength of the country. Growing literacy rate is the need of the hour and the government of Punjab has taken positive steps to address this need.
From Balochistan, Zhob
I want to become a Cardiologist, I successfully got admission in a medical college located in Punjab, on the basis of merit.
My province is the most backward one in the country because of bad governance and lack of education. There are only 12 colleges and 3 Universities in Balochistan, forget about the condition of schools. However, potential talent exists in the province that struggles for upward mobility in the country. Education is the ladder leading to social, moral and economic uplift of not only Balochistan, but the entire country.
From Azad Kashmir, Mirpur
I aspire to become a civil engineer and convert every ‘hut’ of Pakistan into a ‘Sky scraper’
I belong to the ‘valley of heaven’ as Azad Kashmir is known for its irresistible beauty. Unfortunately, the region is in the shackles of ignorance and poverty. The government should establish industries and educational institutes in areas where people are living below the poverty line. Pakistan’s defence budget should be sized down and budget allocated for education should swell.
From Gilgit-Baltistan, Hunza
It is said that ‘man is a social animal’, but by acquiring education we become a more superior creature. The most distressing fact is that; there is no medical or engineering college in my province. All the leaders in my region chant slogans, but never fulfil their promises. Punjab government has taken a laudable initiative to encourage students. The role of CM Punjab, Shehbaz Sharif can be likened to that of Sir Syed Ahmed Khan who aimed at enlightening the Muslims through education after the war of independence, 1857.Today, I want to clarify that I am not a Gilgiti, but a Pakistani. Similarly, I want each one of you to be known as Pakistanis, not as Sindhis, Balochis, Pashtoons or Punjabis. Provinces are meant for making geographical administration better, not to demarcate people living within a single national boundary.
The host of the program, Noor ul Hassan praised the CM Punjab and requested him to work on the cultural policy as immoral dramas of foreign countries were being dubbed in the national language and shown to the public. A ‘guard of honour’ by Punjab police was given to the high achievers.
Electrifying Speech of CM Punjab, Mian Muhammad Shahbaz Sharif
- Rs 55 billion have been invested in the education of youth on the basis of merit. I lament at the extravagance of Musharraf regime and the Punjab government working under him before 2008. Those inefficient rulers were spending money on non developmental projects like complexes for chief ministers. The ‘Ali Baba aur Chaalis Chor’ (Aladdin and the 40 thieves) – [a satirical euphemism that the CM often uses for President Asif Ali Zardari and the ruling elite of Pakistan People’s Party] are plundering the nation. I wish that the previous government wouldn’t have wasted Rs 2 billion to build a CM house in Punjab so that I could have distributed more laptops. If 300 million rupees wouldn’t have vanished in the name of ‘secret fund’ by the corrupt government before 2008, I could have done more than this for accelerating the ‘education drive’ in the province. Look at Kasur road, Fly over of Thokar Niaz Baig, Aarfa Karim IT tower, Daanish Schools and other developmental projects to witness the transformation of ‘graveyards of corruption’ into purposeful projects. This is not the end and the choice is yours alone. You should use your right to vote wisely. Our return after elections 2013 will ensure more advancement and set unprecedented examples. We have already done what has never been done before in the educational sector of Pakistan. Even 10,000 IT experts among those 0.2 million merit scholars who were awarded laptops can make Pakistan better than neighbouring India. My slogan has always been, ‘merit and just merit’. Probably by the start of next year we’ll be distributing Chinese solar lamps among students with a good academic record. I went to China and they were not offering much concession for the lamps driven by solar energy. Consequently, I decided to withdraw the agreement. The Chinese government, considering that the CM has been offended, gifted 10,000 lamps worth Rs 1.2 million to government of the Punjab. These lamps will be a slap on the face of federal government that has pushed the nation into darkness by allowing power and energy crises to prevail in the country. I have never been given even the due provincial share by the federal government to carry out developmental projects, but the Punjab government curbed corruption manage finances. The Rapid Bus Transit System will revolutionize the public transport system of Pakistan.
A Personal Opinion
Efforts, when backed by sincerity often resound in the form of the effects that they generate. Beyond the slightest doubt, the CM has leaped forward to make education a priority and merit the authority. However, a collective and conscious effort is required to materialize the dream of ‘education for all’. This picture explains the reason:
A young hawker selling packs of snacks at Alhamra Cultural Complex, Lahore December 18, 2012
while achievers from different educational institutes join the rhyme of [official song for young merit scholars]
Translation in English:
Glide in the sky
For, you are Pakistan
A new dawn is emerging
Time is moving ahead
So should you . . .
In every field that you enter
Succeed with excellence and move forward
New paths have been traced
For you, to define the destinations
The journey is easier than before
Only if you want it so…[official song for young merit scholars]
However, truth be told as it should be, this blog is being posted due to the laptop gifted to me for achieving first place in the first year of my bachelors programme at University of the Punjab, March 23, 2012. My productivity as a student increased manifold after getting this merit-based token of encouragement.