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Nov 12 - 18, 2001

State Life Announces Winners of Tehra Faida Inaami Scheme

State Life Insurance Corporation of Pakistan (SLIC) has announced the lucky winners of Tehra Faida Inaami Scheme in a draw ceremony held here. The lucky policyholders who have won the three Bumper Prizes of Suzuki VXR are Mr. Wazir Khan from Peshawar bearing policy No. 505184406, Mr. Arshad Javed from Lahore bearing policy No.503410840 and Mr.Barkat Ali from Lahore bearing policy No. 503407740, names of other lucky policyholders who won 7 motorcycles, 10 sets of 21" Color Television, Ten 1 1/2 ton Airconditioners, Ten Refrigerators and other attractive prizes were also announced. The promotional scheme carried 115 fabulous prizes to be distributed amongst the lucky policyholders who have revived their lapsed policies by promptly paying their due premiums between April 1st- August 31, 2001. Mr. Samee-ul-Hasan, Chairman, State Life spoke on the occasion and congratulated the winners of the scheme. He said that the success of the scheme goes to our valued policyholders. He appreciated the efforts of marketing force for successfully procuring Rs. 7 crore 80 lacs premium while reviving 7500 lapsed policies through Tehra Faida Inaami Scheme during its launch between April 1st- August 31, 2001. Mr. Samee reiterated that State Life is committed to provide the quality services and financial protection to our valued policyholders nationwide. Mr. Muhammad Aslam Sabir, Divisional Head, Policyholders Services, presented the salient features of Tehra Faida Inammi Scheme and thanked the members Board of Directors, Executives, Directors, Regional Chiefs, Zonal and Divisional Heads, Senior Corporate and Marketing Executives, prominent citizens and policyholders at large who were present on the occassion. Earlier Mr. Sajjad Malik Regional Chief (Central Region) presented the welcome address.

UBL to collect donations for President's Afghan Muhajereen Fund

The United Bank Limited has opened a special Collection Account No. 01-888-0001 at its various branches to accept donations toward the President's Afghan Muhajereen Fund. Intending donors are requested to generously contribute towards this noble cause.

Microsoft joined hands with Sir Syed University

Microsoft, a US based IT company, a leading manufacturer of operating systems and a world's largest software vendor, formed a coalition in the field of education with Sir Syed University of Engineering and Technology, a biggest and first private engineering university of Pakistan that has over 5000 students, state of the art equipments and prodigious and assiduous faculty.

It creates a great sense of arrogance that we have been selected among the number of universities in Pakistan and it is a vivid evidence of our diligent efforts towards educational awareness. It makes us feel glad and supposed to be a great privilege for us that we have signed an agreement with a company like Microsoft.

On behalf of Microsoft its Country Manager, Mr. Jawad Rehman and on behalf of Sir Syed University, Vice Chancellor, Dr. Saiyid Nazir Ahmad signed the agreement. The signing ceremony was held on Thursday, the 1st October 2001 , in the presence of the Chancellor of the University, Mr. Z.A. Nizami, Hon. General Secretary, Mr. M. Zakir Ali Khan, Hon. Treasurer, Mr. M. Afzal Munif, members of the Board and the IT Advisor of SSUET, Mr. Tariq Nizami. We hope this alliance will prove to be a milestone of our University and this rapport will flourish as the time passes. Nevertheless, it is not only crucial for our university but it will restore the trust of IT Industry of Pakistan as well as the IT industry of US.


Another one of IBA's famous weekly guest speaker sessions was honored by the presence of Mr. Humayun Bashir country general manager of IBM Pakistan. The ex-co chairperson to Sindh governor's task force for revival of Sindh economy, Mr. Humayun made an impressive presentation about the latest IBM equipment. He talked about fiber optics communication and the slow rate of progress in the IT field of Pakistan. The said the current growth rate is around 20% and if this continues then we surely have a long way to go. What else can one expect from a country that allocates only 0.2% of its GDP on IT whereas our neighbours dedicate 1.1% of their GDP which is not much but still more than ours.

Mr. Bashir mentioned that over the next couple of years there will be 1.4 job openings in Europe for IT and computer specialists, but with the current political situation of our country will any of the western countries be willing to employ Pakistanis? That can only be answered in course of time. He basically talked about all the research work that IBM research labs are doing all over the world and how they are contributing to improving technology and modes of communication. He mentioned the importance of chips and at the rate its size is shrinking, in about 15 years he has predicted that it will remain as only silicon dust.

He also mentioned that the only people who recognize the value of such hi fi equipment are computer literate which comprises of only 5000 software graduates in Pakistan. So it is important for us to not only recognize it but also make use of it. He talked about equalizers, global access that IBM offers, its speed, online applications etc. It sounded more like he was marketing his products than educating us. Mr. Humayun Bashir and Mr. Saeed Ghani, CCS's new chairman both mentioned the need for "reestablishing" relationships between IBM and IBA. That probably explains the heap of Compaq computers that were bought for the CCS labs last semester.

The CCS department's BITS Club has made it a routine of holding a guest speaker session every Monday, which makes one wonder as to what good it really does to the students who are forced to attend these sessions which proves to be more of a duty than a learning experience. Recently Mr. Asif Qureishi, CEO of Crestar, came to speak. Crestar builds and operates telecommunication networks. Mr. Asif Qureishi spoke about e-learning. Having done his masters from Harvard University himself, Mr. Asif Qureishi, plans to link various universities of Pakistan to the top universities of America, like MIT, Harvard, Cornell etc. and of other parts of the world too. Now this is something one would call noble. This will prove to be an opportunity for most students who cannot afford to go abroad. He said this would enable local university students to do certificate courses from these universities. He later plans to convert these certificate courses to degree programs. And it also includes the availability of access to libraries online.

He also spoke about the concept of Internet 2 that supposed to be the Internet for the next generation and is 1000 times faster than the current Internet. He presented the architecture for Internet 2 that has been created specially for online education and higher learning. Presently Crestar has partnered with www.americahighereducation.com for online distribution of American courses in Pakistan.

"CASHplus"MCB Cash Management Product

Muslim Commercial Bank Limited, Corporate Banking Group, launched its Cash Management Product "Cash Plus" on November 03, 2001 by signing an agreement with Tapal Tea (Pvt) Ltd. The product which is being launched through the Corporate Banking Group will have a clear edge over competing products because of MCB's unmatched On-line Branch Network, which no other bank can offer in Pakistan.

This product will further strengthen the bank's corporate relationship and ensure that MCB's network of branches is utilized to deliver cost effective and efficient collection of funds with provision of accurate and timely M.I.S. (Management Information System).

The agreement was signed at MCB Corporate & Islamic Banking Group's Office, in the presence of Mr. Mohammad Aftab Manzoor, President, MCB, by Mr. Muhammad Shoaib Qureshi, Head of Corporate & Islamic Banking Group, MCB and Mr. Aftab Tapal, Managing Director Tapal Tea (Pvt) Ltd. Also presents were Mr.Shafiq A. Khan, Head of Operations, Financial Insititutions & International Division, Mr. Shahid Sattar, Head of Commercial Banking Group-South, Mr. Agha Ahmed Shah, Head of Investment Banking Group & Corporate South, Mr. Y.H.Thara, Executive Director & Company Secretary Tapal, and all Team Members of MCB & Tapal Tea (Pvt) Ltd.


As winter approaches and the humanitarian crisis in Afghanistan deepens, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Portugal today announced a joint collaboration between the Portuguese Institute of Co-operation (ICP) and the Aga Khan Foundation (Portugal), whereby Focus Humanitarian Assistance Europe Foundation (FOCUS) will provide urgently needed food assistance to displaced populations in Afghanistan. Under an Agreement signed here, the ICP will contribute 700,000 Euros for the purchase of wheat to be distributed amongst 70,000 displaced persons in Northeast Afghanistan, as part of an extensive emergency relief operation being undertaken by FOCUS in collaboration with agencies of the Aga Khan Development Network and other agencies of the United Nations including the World Food Programme.

The wheat is to be distributed directly to displaced persons in the Badakshan, Parwan and Takhar provinces which are at serious risk of becoming completely isolated until Spring 2002. Border closures and military action are preventing thousands from taking refuge in neighbouring countries and making the passage of humanitarian aid almost impossible. FOCUS's extensive logistics capacity in Northern Afghanistan supported by a base in Tajikistan permits it to overcome some of these challenges. The Agreement signed will enable thousands of displaced persons to survive the two coming critical months of the Afghan winter.

NBP Led Consortium Launches Interest Free Loan Scheme for Students

Pursuant to the announcement made by the Federal Finance Minister in his 2001-2002-budget speech, the Government of Pakistan in collaboration with major commercial banks of Pakistan (NBP, HBL, UBL, MCB and ABL) has launched a "Students Loan Scheme" (SLS) for Education. Under the Scheme, financial assistance will be provided by way of interest free loans to the meritorious students who have financial constraints for pursuing their studies in scientific, technical and professional education within Pakistan.

The Scheme will be administrated by a committee headed by Deputy Governor, State Bank of Pakistan and the Presidents of the five commercial banks while deputy Secretary, Ministry of Finance would be it's member.

The objective of the Students Loan Scheme is to provide financial assistance to the meritorious students of insufficient means, who have obtained at least 70% marks in the last public examination but are unable to pursue their studies due to financial constraints.

Loans under this scheme shall be granted to students who are nationals of Pakistan including Northern Areas, Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA) and Azad Jammu & Kashmir (AJK).

Students Loan Scheme will be allowed only to those students who have been admitted to approved universities/affiliated colleges through normal procedures.

Under the Scheme, loans may be made available in the following disciplines:

i) Engineering ii)Electronic iii) Oil Gas & Petro Chemical Technology iv) Agriculture v) Medicine vi) Physics vii) Chemistry viii) Biology ix) Mathematics x) Other Natural Sciences xi) DAWA and Islamic Jurisprudence (LL.B/LL.M Sharia) xii) Computer Science/Information System and Technology including hardware xiii) Economics, Statistic and Econometrics xiv) Business Management Science xv) Commerce.

Under the Scheme, students age not exceeding 20, 30, 35 years shall be eligible to apply for loans who are pursuing their studies for graduation, post-graduation and Ph.D.

The amount of loans under the Scheme shall cover the cost of tuition fee, books and boarding for the entire duration.

The students desirous of availing loans under the Scheme may apply to the Students Loan Wing, Credit Group, National Bank of Pakistan, Head Office, Karachi.