Gilani wants media to shift focus from politics to youth


Prime Minister Yousaf Raza Gilani on Monday urged the media to shift its focus on issues like education, health, youth and science and technology instead of running after politicians and making speculations when the army would takeover, when the chief justice would take suo motu notice and when would the next elections be held.
“Media should not focus on politicians alone. Instead it should promote students, education, health and other issues related to the youth of Pakistan,” Gilani said while addressing reporters during his speech at the award-distribution ceremony of PM’s Entrepreneurial Challenge, held at National University of Science and Technology (NUST).
“It is immaterial that I am here for some years or not. It is our new generation that you should project and encourage,” he said. “I hope that in view of my advice, tomorrow’s newspapers would give prominence to the news of my very own brilliant students rather than highlighting the prime minister, opposition or the army chief,” added the premier. Earlier, Gilani handed over cash awards amongst the top five teams on preparation of successful business plans. The winning teams included NUST for brain-controlled artificial limb, LUMS for Seraab project of selling cost-effective irrigation water to small farmers, NUST for cost-effective treatment of Hepatitis C, NUST Risalpur-UET Lahore for solar gysers for homes and solar ponds for industrial use and Fatima Jinnah Women University for oil extraction plant of Sea Buckthorn.
In his formal speech, Gilani urged universities in the country to impart entrepreneurial skills to youth to help strengthen national economy. He said the Higher Education Commission (HEC) was also focusing on the greater role of universities in building economy, community and future leaders. “We are also the using Benazir Income Support Fund, micro-credit financing and internship schemes to support the educated and dynamic youth of Pakistan to become high achievers in life,” he said. Gilani recalled that while presiding over a meeting of Pakistan Software Export Board, he directed completion of the Information Technology Park Project in Islamabad on fast-track basis.
He said the project would also be launched in provinces at a later stage and he had already instructed for allotment of a piece of land for this purpose.
Gilani said there was a need for developing linkages between Pakistani universities and job markets. “We must not lose sight of challenges that lie ahead as we march on. These challenges call for encouraging a sense of critical inquiry and a thirst for knowledge among the students.” The prime minister felicitated NUST and Cambridge Advisers Network, the co-organisers of this competition, for identifying the right direction for youth and creating a support system to promote industry-academia collaboration. He said identifying entrepreneurs, connecting them with the industry, providing incubation space and seed funds, arranging industrial mentors and finally celebrating their achievements was a comprehensive phased business development programme. He also commended the efforts of the Ministry of Science and Technology and HEC for their support to technology incubator at NUST and for promoting technology-based businesses.