IT Ministry Spent Rs. 500 Million of USF Money to Build Stadium in Sialkot

Ministry of Information Technology and Telecommunication violated its mandate by giving away Rs. 500 million of Universal Service Fund (USF) for construction of a Stadium in Sialkot, a parliamentary committee meeting said today.

It must be mentioned here that USF money is dedicated for provision of telecom services in under served and un-served areas of the country.

USF money is being collected from private Mobile phone companies at 1.5% of their annual revenues to bridge digital divide in the country. Under the ministry of IT, the USF is mandated to connect far-flung un-served and under-served areas with telecom services both 2G and 3G.

More than Rs. 50 billion of USF funds were transferred from private bank accounts to National Consolidated Fund by PML (N) in 2013.

State Minister for Information Technology Anusha Rehman has repeatedly claimed that government of Pakistan can no longer utilize USF money for anything except for the dedicated purpose of expanding IT and Telecom services in far-flung and underdeveloped areas of the country.

However, senior parliamentarian Senator Sardar Azam Khan Musakhel on Monday revealed that Rs 500 million of the dedicated USF money was spent for the construction of a Stadium in Sialkot .

Also Read: Government Hijacked USF’s Rs. 67.7 Billion to Bring Down its Fiscal Deficit

Sub-committee of the Senate Standing Committee on Information Technology and Telecom met with Taj Mohammad Afridi in the chair to review progress on the USF projects.

The committee directed the concerned authorities to present details on the matter in the next meeting.

FATA is Still Awaiting Mobile Services

The committee expressed its displeasure for not conducting survey in FATA including Mohmand agency, Bajaur Agency, Khyber Agency for provision of mobile services.

The committee appealed to the Prime Minister for providing 3G and 4G services to FATA, especially to Khyber Agency and said that Interior Ministry should take needful measures in this regard.

Committee convener said that USF has over Rs. 55 billion in its accounts. He said that this fund is for providing telecom services in FATA, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and Balochistan, however due to delaying tactics by the bureaucracy and institutions, projects are not being implemented.

There are millions of un-served people (in FATA, KPK, Balochistan) waiting for basic telecom services, but instead of starting new projects, MoIT is giving away USF money for building stadiums in Punjab

The committee observed that China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) would benefit the whole country; however telecom services are yet to reach the entire length of CPEC routes.

Secretary Home department Khyber Pakhtunkhwa informed the committee that NoC for conducting survey from the FATA secretariat is still awaited. NoC would be issued with the approval of 11 Core and a letter has been sent to the Core in this regard.

Convener of the committee recommended for conducting survey in collaboration with Political Agents Bajaur, Mohmand and Khyebr Agency.

Senator Usman Khan Kakar said that it is injustice to keep millions of people on the waiting list for basic telephony services while funds are being spent on parks, roads and metro buses in Punjab province.

The committee directed for providing report in 15 days with respect to conducting survey in FATA, Mohmand and Bajaur agency.

Fiber Optic Project in Balochistan

USF officials informed the committee that 75 percent work on fiber optic in Balochistan province has been completed.

USD said that work in some areas is being carried with the approval of ACs and DCs, due to security reasons.

The committee directed for providing information of areas where security issues are being faced, parliamentarians in collaboration with provincial administration would resolve issues.

Secretary IT Balochistan said that telecom services should be provided on CPEC route as it is urgently required.

Senator Usman Kakar said that Pakistan Telecommunication Authority (PTA) instead of defending private mobile companies should take steps for the betterment of public and State.

  • maza to us waqt ata hai k kuch bhegerat ye sab perhne or dekhne k baad bhi aisi party ko support kerte hain kyun k woh aik zabaan bolte hain
    I guess paindu logo ka tag nahi balke aik soch ka naam hai jo k PML-N, PPP, MQM, JUI-F, JI k logo k dimagh main payi jati hai

      • tujh jese logon ki yehi soch hy jiski waja se corruption k khilaf nahi uthty, ab tere liye koi asmaan se utryga? wese PTI ny tere ghar se kitna khaya hy B-C

        • Thanks you for exposing yourself. Kaash aap ke maa baap aap ko tameez se bina abuse kiye baat karna sikha saktay. A sad day for your parents.

          • same to you, specially when you are saying nothing will change (hopeless) that is even condemned in Islam. kash tere maa baap ny tujhy islami taleem bhi dilwai hoti

            • When I said any hopeless words? I believe Pak is on right track. Just give time to the system whichever party came in power, PTI, PMLN or PPP.
              And it is strange, one who is abusing me few comments above just over change of opinion, is preaching Islam now. Is it your Islam tought by your parents to abuse some one having different views than you?

                • Are not they? PTI myn Imran khan ko chorr k kisi k baray myn kasam kha ke keh saktay ho us ne aaj tak 1 rupay ki 2 numbri nahin ki? Kisi ek ke baray myn?

                  • I did not know about anyone but what I know is that in KPK, ministers pay chalan issued by traffic police, they resign because of their bad attitude, they got arrested, KPK provincial/home minister has the lowest expenses in his tenure, KPK did not allowed Arabs to go for hunting of seasonal birds and the list goes on…
                    So, yes if even they had done corruption still I am not hopeless at all.

                    • Thank you, you have summed up the conversation, they have done so much for KPK and so you are ok with their corruption. Same goes for PMLN and their fans, PPP and their jayalaas.
                      Bye the way KPK Murad Ali khan suspended a traffic warden over his father’s chalan. Thank you. Nice talking you. Good bye

      • I am all ears, can u explain how PTI is nangee in this hamam and dont go blabbing all the media propaganda of NOON

        • I know you wont beleive, so i am not going to convince you :D
          Keep your eyes close you Patwaris, Youthiyas and Jayalaas. Let me enjoy the moment :P

          • Not like this bro, any one who questions should not be judged.
            Believe me i will Believe. I dont like PTI, just cant found a solid reason/justification for the same and i mean a valid reason and not just BS media propaganda

    • Amazon and eBay anay se mulk ki ghurbat khatam hogi ya taleem or shaoor ayega?
      bhai mere apny 100% zaati mufaad rakhny k bajaye esa mufad rakho jo k tumhary zati mufad sath is mulk ki bhalai k liye bhi kaam aye

      • Bhai mere IT ministry ka kaam ghurbat khatam krna ya taleem or shaoor lana nhi he, IT ministry ka kaam IT ko farogh dena he, or wo bhi to theek tarah se kr nhi rahi… Uper se stadium bna ke konsi ghurbat me kami ayegi, ya taleem or shaoor ayega…

        • if you read carefully, stadium directly IT ministry ny nahi banwae bal k taklooo ny IT ministry k account se paisay release kiye hain.
          baki IT ko farog dena hy to IT education and jobs ko available karwao, aaj bhi fresh graduates 8000 starting salary wali job kar rahay hain. eBay wagera se apka faida to ho sakta hy jo electronic items ki purchasing karty hain lekin IT industry is se agay nahi barhygi
          IT ministry needs to introduce research centers as well like in India and thats why Inidans are now a days everywhere in IT on managerial positions in the world top leading IT organizations.

          • You are right on point to build more educational programs and institutions but Awaisee is also not wrong. When other payment gateways would be available in pakistan, IT business will increase which will eventually bring new job opportunities.

            • To be honest my understanding is very different (because my background is in digital payments), eBay, Amazon or whoever, they will simply contract with any bank for transactions (just like MasterCard e-payment gateway is already available in Pakistan from 2014). Even if they want to have their own gateway, it would be outsourced, they will not create a new company to write a payment gateway for them.

  • I am from Sialkot, there was a old cricket stadium which was there for as long as I can remember, another hockey stadium was built which is almost a decade old now. Apart from these, there isnt any new stadium being built.

    • i am also from Sialkot. you are saying right. i also have not heard any new about new stadium. it look a like Khawaja Asif have build stadium in his home.

      • Right, they build infrastructure and ignore primary needs of people because they give contract to their family companies and bag more money to their own account by exaggerating the expense on projects from tax payers money.

  • in 90s they looted openly, in 00s they loot legally. just change the law in parliament and now you are legal. This is why democracy is the worst system to have where laws can be changed as you wish.

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