Digitalization inevitable to curb corruption, promote taxation: President

Universities need paradigm shift towards online education to produce more graduates: President


ISLAMABAD: President Dr. Arif Alvi Monday while lauding the Federal Tax Ombudsman’s role in bringing ease of doing business and addressing taxpayers’ trust deficit, emphasized the institution to enhance its outreach and adopt digitalization to address corruption, delays in disposal of cases and bring about transparency. The president, addressing a Public Awareness Seminar on the role of the Federal Tax Ombudsman (FTO), said pilferage of funds and record tampering could be stopped through the use of blockchain technology. Lauding the role of FTO for providing Rs 8.5 billion relief to the taxpayers last year, the president called stressed the need for a better connection between the people and the government institutions. He viewed that cordial working relations between the FTO and tax institutions would also pave way for a conducive environment for the taxpayers.   The president said the early adoption of technology was inevitable as in some cases, the delays are intentionally made to mint money and exemplified the impediments in the procedures of customs clearance of products exported by the business community.

Calling for the reduction of human factors, the president cited the introduction of information technology in the Auditor General of Pakistan’s affairs asking the auditors to frame the charge sheet within a day to minimize the chance of corruption. President Dr. Arif Alvi on Monday urged the universities to broaden the scope of their education systems by promoting virtual dissemination of knowledge in order to increase the number of graduates in the country.

“Besides the conventional brick-and-mortar system, our higher education system needs a paradigm shift to focus on online education as well to match the growing needs of the contemporary world,” the president said, in his address here at the 14th convocation of Sarhad University of Science and Information Technology Peshawar. President Alvi said by the year 2030, the world would be needing 80 million graduates in the field of information technology. In this regard, he said, Pakistan must produce graduates capable of exploiting global opportunities.

“For Pakistan, making education common for all is the key to development. Virtual education is the only rapid way to achieve this goal,” he said. He mentioned his already launched Presidential Initiative of Artificial Intelligence and Computing as an important step in reshaping and revolutionizing the country’s education, research, and business systems through the adoption of cutting-edge technologies. Terming Pakistan’s youth bulge as a valuable resource for the country, he asked the graduates to explore the world by acquiring quality knowledge and the latest skills. The president said the world was reaching out to Pakistan in view of its human resource and emphasized the need to tap the opportunities as per the growing demand of the international market. Recalling Prime Minister Imran Khan’s recent visit to China as a win-win situation in terms of growth and development, he said the areas of agriculture, pharmaceutical, automotive, textile, and information technology offered vast scope for Pakistani students and professionals. President Alvi said Pakistan was emerging as a stable State with exponential development in various fields and advised the youth not to pay attention to the statements of despondency about the country. He congratulated the graduates on securing positions in their respective disciplines and urged them to keep working hard by adhering to the principles of morality, Islamic traditions, and national identity. Minister for Higher Education, Khyber Pukhtunkhwa Kamran Khan Bangash said the provincial government was promoting higher education by facilitation both public and private sectors. He mentioned that skill development, scholarships, and setting up new educational institutes were the priority areas of the KP government.

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