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Punjab Information Technology Board dumps projects after spending Rs 180m
10-11-2009, 04:49 AM
Post: #1
Punjab Information Technology Board dumps projects after spending Rs 180m
Sunday, October 11, 2009
By Moayyed Jafri

LAHORE

The Punjab Information Technology Board (PITB) has ceased operations on more than a dozen projects without completion by terming them unfruitful, compromising over Rs. 180 million the projects have already consumed, ‘The News’ has learnt.

The projects which are a blend of training programs and development schemes have been ceased, terminating over 80 employees working on the projects. Some of the projects given up unfinished include the Computerization of Irrigation and Power systems, Urban Improvable Property Tax, Demand based Training, Computerization of Special Branch Police, Office Automation of PSIC, Hospital Management Information Systems, and Computerization of Labor Department.

Sources have revealed that not only these projects have been shut down but PIBT’s utilization of funds in the first quarter of the fiscal year is below one percent. It is pertinent to mention that (PITB) utilized only a fraction, about 24 percent, of its total allotted budget last year subject to which the budget for the year 2009— 2010 was cut down by Rs 200 million.

The projects are progressive and important when it comes to automation of institutions as per the vision of e-governance promoted by the Chief Minister Punjab himself. The large amounts of funds already consumed are unaccounted for and there is no explanation of this shear wastage of the tax-payer’s money.

The employees fired after the shut-down of these projects have been seeking adherence from the government ever since they were relieved f their jobs. The employees held a protest demonstration on Saturday in front of the chief secretary’s office. The protestors demanded that they should be given justice and the self righteous Chairman PITB Raanaa Ahmed should be held accountable for her actions.

In a recent action taken by the PITB chairman, the General Manager Finance Rana Arshad who was performing his duties pretty well in the said capacity had been shifted from the post of GM Finance and given charge of the GM Admin. The position of General Manager Finance had been handed over to the previously GM Admin and Operation Amir Khatak.

It merits mentioning here that Amir Khatak has already been involved in over-utilization of his compensation and benefits and the case is under the consideration of S&GAD.

The act of giving charge of finance to a person who is already under investigation for financial disorders is beyond comprehension, especially when it does not benefit the PITB. When contacted, Ranaa Ahmed said that the projects that had been shut down were not fruitful and were a source of over recruiting which was not beneficent for the organization. She also said that the projects were all training programs.


http://thenews.com.pk/daily_detail.asp?id=202604
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