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Old Monday, May 06, 2013
JS1325 JS1325 is offline
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JS1325 will become famous soon enough

Well I was the 2nd last to enter. My interview lasted 30 minutes exactly and the surprising thing was that His highness Sir Raja Nagib ullah Malik did not accord me with his honourable presence which I don't know, whether it is fortunate or unfortunate. Anyways I entered the room and Sir Asif Hayat greeted me with a big smile, and the man has SOME personality.

Chairman? So you work at?

Me: Sir at XYZ protocol stack developing company which is a subsidiary of ABC company located in Switzerland. We develop protocol stack for 4G LTE

Chairman: But we do not have 3G in Pakistan, so what do you guys do with 4G?

Me: Sir we develop the stack for our parent company and they then have a clientale in Europe where they deploy it.

Chairman: So tell me what do you think why do we not have 3G even?

Me: Sir two entities are responsible. First of all inefficiencies of PTA and secondly a negative approach of opposition party. PTA developed a policy which was approved by the government and then went for auction but opposition parties opposed it saying that 1st consultants should be hired for the consultation purpose who would devise a plan for auction. So process was scrapped and next time advertisement for consultant was given but no consultant approached the government.

Chairman: Why so?

Me: (Stupid answer) Sir there are opposition parties behind the saga as they do not want the current government to take the credit for introducing 3G in Pakistan. Nor do they want government to avail the amount the auction of 3G will produce.

Chairman: Should not we be going to 4G directly as 3G is outdated?

Me: Sir the telecommunication companies have already upgraded their equipment in conformance with 3G services and huge amount has been spend in this regard. Now scrapping this and installing 4G equipment will be a loss no major vendor will like to bear. We have already got the equipment in place, we need to go for 3G.

Chairman: But 4G is more advanced. Why should we stick with 3G?

Me: Sir, as I said the equipment is in place already and secondly the telecommunication gadgets and devices we have in Pakistan, they are more compatible to features of 3G than 4G. Why should we be going for 4G when our gadgets do not have the compatibility (That was a big bluff I played hoping he would not call it. May he did call it without letting me know ). For 4G we will have to import 4G compatible devices which will again be a huge undertaking at mass level

Chairman: But look, 3G is outdated. People do not care what government can or can not offer. I mean 4G has a lot more features which 3G does not offer. Why should we adopt 3G when 4G is available? (At this point I was wondering what he is upto. Just bludgeoning me again and again with the same question)

Me: Sir the services which are provided by 3G are quite advanced as well, though outdated in the world, they can still make bring a major shift in Pakistan's telecom industry. We have a youth bulge which has access to internet and 3G's higher bandwidths will actually help them be more knowledgeable and gain education through it (That was stupid I know).

Chairman: But 4G has more potential

Me (I was like, sir I 'm done with you) : Sir by using 3G and then 4G in in incremental steps rather than making a huge leap, we can also secure auction money offered by both.

Chairman: No no it won;t yield that much of an amount. Thank you.

Mansoor Sohail: So, do you read newspaper?

Me: Yes sir I do.

MS: What is today's headline?

Me: Sir, I have not been through today's paper.

MS: But you said you read paper.

Me: Yes sir but I couldn't today as I was going through other stuff

MS: What were you doing sitting in the other room for 6 hours?

Me: Sir I was going through other material.

MS: Ok. So tell me some negatives of PPP's federal and PML-N's provincial development projects.

Me: Sir as of PML-N, I am a critic of his MBS which is more suited to developed countries (All hail Asad Umer for bashing he gave to Salman Shahbaz in Kamran Khan show) He developed MBS at the expanse of education and health sector which demanded most attention. His Danish schools' initiative is merely cosmetic. Had the same money been spent on government schools already in place, we would have had a higher enrolment rate. As of PPP, it has demonstrated worst economic management in the history of Pakistan.

MS: We are talking about development projects.

Me: Yes sir, as of PPP government in center (I was looking at Jyala-cum-Chairman saab through the corner of my eyes, hoping a stern face, but he was busy reciting something with his eyes closed) , I would appreciate BISP which has disbursed more than 120 Billion Rs to the needy. But I can't think of any other PPP projects with negative performance (Don't know what on earth I was thinking )

MS: You have forgot to mention PML's failure to install small hydropower projects.

Me: Yes sir we could have developed run on the river systems.

MS: And let me correct you here, Federal Govt has a huge PSDP (Public Damn-it Sector Development Project) and PPP failed at this front.

Me: Right sir.

MS gives a killer stare.

Me Nodding my head

MS: Ok so what about foreign policy. Highlight one major successful foreign policy measure.

Me: Pakistan's focus on neglected areas, like approaching Russia for cordial bilateral relations. At the same time, making USA realise that Pakistan is indispensable for US interests in the region and no more can USA divorce Pakistan on accomplishments of her strategic interests. Plus we are talking with India on core issues, setting Kashmir aside for the time being, which although is a major issue, but needs to be resolved in a more cordial atmosphere when CBMs take place.

MS: You forgot to mention IP pipeline

Me: As of Iran, I believe it to be a political stunt by PPP at this critical time when government is about to change hands. The coming government has to bear rising Western pressure on this deal which Mr Zardari concluded in the last month in office.

Alright. Over to Ghalibbudin saahib.

G: So you said you did not read today's paper. Today Fazlur rehman gave a statement that all liberals be declared minorities. How do you view it

Me: Sir, it reflects his frustration on the cognition of the fact that his party is not going to win much seats, like it has always been throughout Pak's political history. People are fed up of his narrative given the current dismal security situation. He does not have the courage to declare militants as terrorists and in recent APCs, he called TTP as stakeholders, not terrorists. So I believe he is just frustrated.

G: And you know Islamist parties were against the creation of Pakistan?

Me. Yes sir they were. JI clearly declared QA as kafir and now they are self styled custodians of the ideology of Pakistan.

G: Ok, so coming to USA history, when did USA's humanitarian aid programme start?

Me: Sir it was with Truman doctrine when he aided Greece and Turkey to save them from the clutches of communism.

G: No, it was JFK.

Me: Sir I beg your pardon, Truman preceded JFK.

G: But what you are talking about, the Marshal plan, it is something different.

Me: Alright sir (As if I was left with any other option )

G: Name major oil producers of world

me: Saudia, Iran, Russia, Venezuela andddddddddddddddddddddd

G: You are missing number 2 in the world

And as I was about to say USA.............

G: It is USA.

Me: Alright!

G: Does Pakistan have a way forward to extricate itself from its problems?

Me: Sir we have to bolster economy, have to eradicate social ills..

G: No no, I am not talking in general, tell me some concrete facts

Me: Sir if you can elaborate in which field do you solicit my opinions?

G:Let's say Public sector enterprises restructuring.

Me: Sir we can introduce BOD reforms, award discretionary powers, debundle different functions, introduce transparency by hiring Transparency Intl's chapter to keep an eye on PSE's expenditures. May be form a temporary ministry which coordinates functions of different PSEs to ensure public system delivery.

G: Many of these procedures are already in place.

Me: Jobs will have to be shed so that political appointees can be removed.

Over to Maam.

M: You talked about public sector reforms. Should not we simply stop bailing them out time and again?

Me: Mam whatever the situation is, they are still public sector enterprises and we can not just jilt them because they need bail-outs. Any such step would bring public delivery system to a grinding halt. We can gradually privatise them

M: But the PIA chairman has declared that PIA will have to be grounded in December for lack of funds.

Me: Mam, this is his admittance of his failure as the chairman.

M: But he is right.

Me: Through right, but he should have known this the time he was appointed the chairman of PIA when he was making proud claims about how he will bring reforms and bring the deficit down

Mam: You tell me what is the major problem of PIA?

Me: Mam they gave a large .... human resource..

Mam (obstructing me) They are overburdened by a large number of employees. There are 500 people per plane.

Me: Mam this is exactly my point and all these are political appointments. the government has adopted the system of spoils in this regard and thus the current situation.

M: You belong to the service sector, tell me what issues does the service sector- which constitutes about 60 % of GDP- has to face?

Me: Mam first of all there is a lack of regulatory framework which leaves the whole sector at the disposal of various state institutions, which have carved out their particular spheres of influence which overlap most of the times. SECP has been doing some good work, more and more companies are being registered and brought into the tax net but a lot more needs to be done.

M: So you are saying they do not pay any taxes? They contribute the largest amount to revenue generation

Me: Mam as you said they form 60% of GDP. If the whole sector paid taxes, we would not be facing this mind boggling situation where stock exchange is on an all time high whereas no benefits are being reflected in the economic circle.

M: Any other issues?

Me: (After thinking for a couple of seconds, I could not think of anything and I just went with the first words that came to my mind. Public private partnership ) Maam although the public private partnership is already in place, more needs to be done to invite foreign direct investment as there are a lot of areas in services sector which have a potential to grow but are halted due to lack of investment. We have to procure more investment by improving the situation on ground.

Mam: Alright thank you.

Chairman: Ok Mr Syed.. Thank you very much. Have a very nice day.

I stood up and addressed the chairman with a smile on my face: Sir it is Sayed, not syed.

Chairman: Ok alright. Sayed. Sayed. Good day Sayed

Me: Thank you very much sir. Assalamoalaikum.

Perhaps they had not had lunch and I looked like someone they could grill. Plus many of my answers were wayward. 1st time syndrome perhaps. Or the nerves. But it's done and dusted.

Kindly comment and sympathise. God bless us all (including Fazlur Rehman)
"And how can man die better than facing fearful odds, for the ashes of his fathers, and the temples of his Gods?"
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The Following 4 Users Say Thank You to JS1325 For This Useful Post:
andleeb Akhter (Tuesday, May 07, 2013), dr1hasan (Tuesday, May 07, 2013), mechrose37 (Monday, May 06, 2013), Seemab (Tuesday, May 07, 2013)