Sunday, May 1, 2011

Pakistan Rolling Out 50 Mbps Broadband Service

Pakistan is working on a major roll-out of bonded VDSL2 to deliver 50 Mbps, five times the top speed of the nation's highest level of service today, at a construction cost of just $200-300 per home passed.



Pakistan Telecommunication Company Limited (PTCL), the nation’s state-controlled phone company, is deploying VDSL2 Bonding technology to provide existing digital subscriber line (DSL) customers with speeds up to 50 Mbps. The project leverages Alcatel-Lucent’s VDSL2 Bonding expertise and will be completed by the end of the second quarter of 2011, according to a report in Daily Times.

VDSL2 technology is a good cost-effective option for Pakistan to upgrade existing DSL because it could serve as a platform to deliver broadband, video, and phone service, much like AT&T’s U-verse known as triple-play. VDSL2 Bonding takes two copper-based VDSL2 lines per subscriber and aggregates them—almost doubling the bandwidths available to existing customers, or expanding high-speed broadband access to areas that are underserved today.

PTCL selected VDSL2 over fiber to the home (FTTH) primarily because of cost. With fiber installs twice as expensive as a DSL upgrade, a developing country like Pakistan couldn’t justify the higher price. VDSL is expected to be an important part of broadband expansion in the developing world, particularly in Africa, southeastern Europe, and central Asia. Longer term, Pakistan is building Fiber To The Home (FTTH) network for much higher bandwidths, and several thousand homes have already been wired with fiber as a pilot roll-out in Islamabad by a Pakistani Internet service provider (ISP) called Nayatel.



With just over a million broadband subscribers as of October 2010, Pakistan’s broadband subscriber base is small. But it is in the midst of explosive growth with an increase of 63.5% from the 643,892 in December 2009. While the DSL remains the main technology used to access broadband services in the country, alternative wireless solutions WiMAX and EV-DO are catching up fast. The number of DSL users grew by 96.5% from 262,661 in June 2009, according to Business Monitor International (BMI). By contrast, subscriber figures of WiMAX and EV-DO increased by 246.6% and 708.5% over the same period to reach 306,665 and 181,947 respectively. The popularity of mobile broadband services is likely due to more affordable pricing plans bundled with low-cost mobile devices. Moreover, two-thirds of the population reside in rural areas where fixed-line infrastructure remains poor and wireless broadband service therefore becomes an attractive and relatively cheaper method to bring connectivity to the underserved regions.



At current pricing, PTCL offers a basic broadband service package with a 256kbps connection limited to 1GB of data for Rs. 299 ($3.50) a month. This low-cost package is designed for users interested in email and light browsing, not heavy downloads and uploads.

The next level is the popular 2Mbps unlimited package for around Rs. 1499 ($17.78) a month. And then there is 10Mbps service for an expensive Rs. 8500 ($100) a month. With the upgrades, PTCL can either raise speeds, reduce prices, or a combination of both. Other than the 256kbps service, all other broadband packages from the company offer unlimited use.

Considering all the massive negative propaganda in the Indian and western media about Pakistan, it is interesting to see that some Americans are noticing the high-speed access build-out in the "failed state" of Pakistan by a state-owned telephone company.

In a provocatively titled post "Osama bin Laden Getting Faster Internet Than You Have: Pakistan’s 50Mbps Future", an American blogger Philip Dampier complains as follows: "While America’s heartland is being wired for 3Mbps DSL service, residents in Pakistan are getting ready for speeds up to 50Mbps thanks to a major broadband expansion in the country".

Related Links:

Haq's Musings

Mobile Internet in South Asia

Media and Telecom Sectors Growing in Pakistan

Internet Service Providers of Pakistan

Poverty Reduction Through Telecom Access

Pakistan's Telecom Boom

Pakistan Tops Text Message Growth

WiMax Rollout in Pakistan

Mobile Internet in Pakistan

Smartphones in Pakistan

Low Literacy Threatens Pakistan's Future

Gender Gap in South Asia

Mobile Financial Services in Pakistan

ITU Internet Access Data by Countries

Financial Services in Pakistan

Distance Learning in Pakistan

Top 5 ICT4D Trends in 2010

ICT4D in Pakistani Hospital

ITCN Asia 2010 Conference in Karachi

State of Telecom Industry in Pakistan

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17 Comments:

Blogger Riaz Haq said...

A Pakistani's tweets captured the events in Abbottabad in a twitter stream hours before Obama announced the killing of Osama Bin Laden, according to CNET news:

Even before U.S. special forces succeeded in their mission to capture or kill Osama bin Laden earlier today, Twitter users were recording a rough outline of the events to come.

Sohaib Athar, who describes himself as a 30-ish independent software consultant "taking a break from the rat-race by hiding in the mountains with his laptops," happened to be in Abbottabad, Pakistan, about 10 hours ago.

Athar heard the helicopters used during the raid. He shared updates live on Twitter, according to the microblogging service's timestamps. And he's likely to be a footnote in history as a result.

President Obama announced bin Laden's demise this evening, saying the elusive al-Qaeda leader was killed in a firefight and the identity of his body had been confirmed. (See related CNET story.)

Here are some excerpts from the conversation that Athar and other Twitter users had over the last 10 hours:

https://twitter.com/ReallyVirtual/status/64780730286358528
Helicopter hovering above Abbottabad at 1AM (is a rare event). about 10 hours ago via TweetDeck

https://twitter.com/ReallyVirtual/status/64783440226168832
A huge window shaking bang here in Abbottabad Cantt. I hope its not the start of something nasty :-S about 10 hours ago via TweetDeck

https://twitter.com/ReallyVirtual/status/64792407144796160
@m0hcin all silent after the blast, but a friend heard it 6 km away too... the helicopter is gone too. about 9 hours ago via TweetDeck in reply to m0hcin

https://twitter.com/m0hcin/status/64791032579108864
Just talked to family in Abbottabad, say they heard three blasts one after another, don't know what really happened. about 10 hours ago via web

https://twitter.com/ReallyVirtual/status/64793269908930560
@m0hcin the few people online at this time of the night are saying one of the copters was not Pakistani... about 9 hours ago via TweetDeck in reply to m0hcin

https://twitter.com/m0hcin/status/64794837077065728
Seems something nasty happening in #Abbottabad, God save us. about 9 hours ago via web

https://twitter.com/ReallyVirtual/status/64796769418088448
Since taliban (probably) don't have helicpoters, and since they're saying it was not "ours", so must be a complicated situation #abbottabad about 9 hours ago via TweetDeck

https://twitter.com/ReallyVirtual/status/64798882332278785
The abbottabad helicopter/UFO was shot down near the Bilal Town area, and there's report of a flash. People saying it could be a drone. about 9 hours ago via TweetDeck

https://twitter.com/tahirakram/status/64797447821602816
@ReallyVirtual Damn. Unusual. Was it of Pakistan Army? about 9 hours ago via TweetDeck in reply to ReallyVirtual

https://twitter.com/ReallyVirtual/status/64800262354763776
@tahirakram very likely - but it was too noisy to be a spy craft, or, a very poor spy craft it was. about 9 hours ago via TweetDeck

https://twitter.com/ReallyVirtual/status/64892915167657984
@kursed Well, there were at least two copters last night, I heard one but a friend heard two, for 15-20 minutes. about 3 hours ago via TweetDeck in reply to kursed

https://twitter.com/naqvi/status/64883228590350336
i think the helicopter crash in Abbottabad, Pakistan and the President Obama breaking news address are connected. about 3 hours ago via web Retweeted by ReallyVirtual

https://twitter.com/ReallyVirtual/status/64892915167657984
Uh oh, now I'm the guy who liveblogged the Osama raid without knowing it. about 2 hours ago via TweetDeck



Read more: http://news.cnet.com/8301-31921_3-20058790-281.html#ixzz1LD0zXP60

May 2, 2011 at 8:30 AM  
Blogger sameena Khan said...

i think its a good step of the ptcl to increase the dsl speed, i find a website which is full of mobiles information, mobile phone prices, mobile phone latest news, IT news, nokia,
samsung, motorola, LG, with mobile pictures,just visit to
Blackberry Mobiles

May 9, 2011 at 4:29 AM  
Blogger Riaz Haq said...

Here are ITU Internet stats for South Asia:

Pakistan:

20,350,000 Internet users as of Jun/10, 11.5% penetration, per ITU.

3,145,840 Facebook users on December 31/10, 2.2% penetration

3,992,500 Facebook users on March 31/11, 2.1% penetration

India:

100,000,000 Internet users as of Dec/10, 8.5% penetration, per IWS.

17,289,020 Facebook users on December 31/10, 1.9% penetration rate.

23,042,800 Facebook users on March 31/11, 1.9% penetration rate.

Bangladesh:

1,429,200 Internet users as of Mar/11, 0.9% penetration, per FB.

995,560 Facebook users on August 31/10, 0.6% penetration rate.

1,429,200 Facebook users on March 31/11, 0.9% penetration rate.

Afghanistan:

1,000,000 Internet users as of Jun/10, 3.4% penetration, per ITU.

52,980 Facebook users on August 31/10, 0.2% penetration rate.

165,120 Facebook users on March 31/11, 0.6% penetration rate.

May 16, 2011 at 5:41 PM  
Blogger Riaz Haq said...

With the placement of UAE's Yahsat communication satellite by a European Ariane 5 ECA rocket on April 22, satellite broadband service by Yahclick in now expected to be available by the end of this year in Pakistan.

The price of customer premises equipment will be around $700 one time (deep discount on the $2000 cost) and the customer needs to pay $40 per month to enjoy 2Mbps of Unlimited Bandwidth Internet connection.

The satellite broadband internet service in Pakistan will provide Communication services to remote areas where telecom infrastructure does not already exist.

Yahsat 1B uses state of the art Ka band multi spot-beam technology, achieving high bandwidth.

May 18, 2011 at 9:11 PM  
Blogger Riaz Haq said...

PTA Chairman says Local manufacturing of smart phones, according a Daily Times report:

KARACHI: The local assembly and manufacturing of low-priced ‘smart phones’ will start soon in the country by Pakistani companies in collaboration with chip designers and Chinese manufacturers.

Pakistan Telecommunication Authority (PTA) Chairman Dr Muhammad Yaseen said this while talking to media persons at the interactive session for ICT stakeholders – ‘Connect ICT Forum 2011’, organised by Pegasus Consultancy at Karachi Expo Centre here Wednesday.

He said several memorandums of understanding (MoUs) have been signed recently, between local companies and Chinese manufacturers and chip designer Falcom for producing smart phones in Pakistan.

The event was organised by PTA in an effort to start local assembly and manufacturing of smart phones, which are currently being imported. Responding to a question about the misuse of SIMs, he said that PTA has blocked 16.5 million mobile SIMs and during the ongoing data cleansing under third phase, PTA is receiving 400,000 quests per day on its complaint number 668.

Yaseen hoped that no unidentified SIM will remain in cellular phone network after May 17, which is the last to confirm the validity of your SIM and clean your mobile phone record.

He said the sales of handsets will not be affected due to the ongoing data cleaning campaign.

Replying to a question about smuggled handsets, he said that PTA has submitted its input to the IT Ministry in which it has suggested two-pronged policy. First, to impose ban on these handsets at customs stage where IMEI numbers are not mentioned, and second, impose a ban on the sale of such phones in the country.

He pointed out that millions of mobile phone imports were allowed without type approval of authority after 2005, therefore handsets without IMEI numbers flooded the local markets.

To a question on mobile phone banking, he said that a final meeting will be held between PTA and State Bank of Pakistan to discuss and come out with consensus on modalities and authentication issues on May 11.

Earlier, speaking at the forum, he said that PTA will again arrange meetings between service providers and academia to encourage development in the ICT sector.

May 18, 2011 at 10:53 PM  
Blogger Riaz Haq said...

Here's a report in The Nation on PTCL data centers in Pakistan:

ISLAMABAD - PTCL, understanding the rapidly changing business environment and its growing reliance upon automation, has introduced region’s largest Data Centres in Karachi and Lahore. These centers are certified by the internationally recognized certification body, EPI.
This certification by an international body is the first data centre certification in Pakistan’s history and proves PTCL’s commitment to providing state of the art products and services backed by engineering and support for the Government and Enterprise markets of Pakistan, says a press release issued here on Wednesday.
PTCL Data Center services is an ideal choice for companies who want the flexibility to house their Primary, Disaster Recovery and/or Business Continuity sites and choose from a variety of cost reducing services as their business demands.
PTCL Data Centre solution provides customers managed and hosted cloud based services that comprise of computing as a service, processing as a service, storage as a service, software as a service, application hosting, infrastructure hosting, caging, co-location, disaster recovery as a service, backup solutions, hosted business solutions, unified communications and telepresence switching.
President PTCL Walid Irshaid said “PTCL is heavily investing in these ICT assets on behalf of our customers so that they can focus on their core competencies. Getting our Data Centers certified is further evidence that PTCL is committed to provide technology to the Govt and Enterprise markets of Pakistan of international standards.
This certification by an internationally recognized organization ensures that PTCL Data centers provide a reliable, responsive and resilient infrastructure, is designed and built using international standards and provides a secure, managed, climatically controlled environment for the housing and hosting of sensitive, mission-critical data and applications.

May 24, 2011 at 5:37 PM  
Blogger Riaz Haq said...

Here's a Dawn story on rapid broadband growth in Pakistan:

WASHINGTON: Pakistan is ranked as one of top countries that registered high growth rates in broadband Internet penetration among their populace, the latest worldwide data report for Q1 2010 to Q1 2011 says.

Serbia leads all countries surveyed with a 68% annual growth rate from Q1 2010 to Q1 2011, according to July 2011 Bandwidth Report with data on worldwide bandwidth penetration.

The figures were cited by Website Optimization, LLC, a leading website optimizing firm, sourced from Point Topic, a global broadband tracker, and reported by PRWeb.

Pakistan, which has seen a boom in its promising telecom sector and information technology services in recent years, recorded around 46.2 percent growth of subscribers and is placed fourth on the ranking list.

The closest South Asian country to Pakistan on the list of top countries is Sri Lanka at the 11th spot with its broadband penetration growing in 30s while India lags at the 14th place in terms of broadband growth.

Globally, only Thailand and Belarus had greater percentage expansion than Pakistan, apart from top-rated Serbia during the period.

Pakistan’s digital growth prospects have begun to look brighter lately.

Besides having a large bilingual (English and Urdu) Internet conversant population, Pakistan’s software companies have carved a niche internationally in recent years.

According to government figures, the country’s information technology exports totaled $1.4 billion in the last financial year.

Experts say the IT industry, which adds thousands of skilled workers every year, has the potential to hit multimillion export target within next five to ten years. Additionally, mobile phone and wireless Internet usage are also expanding rapidly.

The survey data shows that China continues to lead the world in total broadband subscribers. As of the first quarter of 2011, China had over 135 million broadband subscribers, with the US at over 88 million subscribers in second place. Japan, German, and France followed China and the US in total subscribers.


http://www.dawn.com/2011/08/30/pakistan-among-top-countries-registering-high-broadband-growth.html

http://www.websiteoptimization.com/bw/1107/

http://www.nation.com.pk/pakistan-news-newspaper-daily-english-online/Business/31-May-2011/Pakistan-earning-US-14-bln-through-IT-exports-PM

August 30, 2011 at 10:25 PM  
Blogger Riaz Haq said...

PTCL brings 100 Mbits fiber to home service, according to Online News:

KARACHI: Pakistan Telecommunication Company Limited (PTCL) has deployed its first ever Fiber to Home service based on Gigabit Passive Optical Network (GPON) technology in Karachi.

PTCL with its commitment to provide the latest technology and innovative products to its customers has introduced its first ever Fiber to Home service in Karachi while this service is also available in Lahore and Islamabad as well, says a press statement received here on Wednesday.

GPON provides a capacity boost in both the total bandwidth and bandwidth efficiency through the use of larger, variable-length packets. It not only provides substantially higher efficiency as a transport network, but also delivers simplicity and superb scalability for future expansion in supporting additional services with lowest cost for all modes of operation.

With this unique capability PTCL has raised the bar of customer experience by many notches. Initially the service includes unprecedented voice quality on telephone, extremely fast and reliable broadband connectivity and digital television with amazing video quality.

PTCL’s SEVP, Business Zone South, Abdullah Yousef Abdullah said on this occasion, “PTCL will widely deploy Fiber to the home technology of which the first step has already been taken in some parts of Karachi giving our valued customers the opportunity to experience the latest technology and the best quality of service.

Our aim is to delight our customers with such innovative products right at their doorstep which suits their life styles and spending budgets”.


http://www.onlinenews.com.pk/details.php?id=183477

October 21, 2011 at 11:33 AM  
Blogger Riaz Haq said...

US soldier builds an iPhone app for artillery fire, reports Bloomberg:

At Camp Blessing in Afghanistan’s Pech Valley, some American soldiers played “Angry Birds” on their iPhones when off-duty. Jonathan Springer decided to put his device to a different use: building an app to help fight the Taliban.

“I wanted to give something back to soldiers that might help save their lives,” Springer, 32, said in an interview from his base at Fort Bragg, North Carolina.

The result is Tactical Nav, an iPhone application the U.S. Army captain built with $30,000 of his savings and a maxed-out credit card a year ago. The $5.99 app uses GPS technology and the iPhone’s camera to chart coordinates and guide artillery fire. It has been downloaded about 8,000 times by U.S., Canadian and Australian soldiers, as well as hunters and hikers, Springer said. From e-mails he has received from soldiers who have gone on patrol with it, the app has been used in both combat and training, Springer said.

If Teri Takai gets her way, American soldiers, sailors and marines may all soon be able to download Tactical Nav and other military programs through a dedicated U.S. Defense Department app store. Takai, the department’s chief information officer, wants to build a secure network of smartphone apps to help soldiers fight in new ways, from more precise maps to better manuals. If security challenges get resolved, the project will result in a revenue source for app developers and a potential boon for iPhones, iPads and Android devices.


http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2011-12-15/soldiers-iphones-guide-artillery-fire-as-pentagon-plans-app-store-tech.html

December 19, 2011 at 8:38 AM  
Blogger Riaz Haq said...

Here's a Business Recorder story on PTCL's wireless broadband network coverage in Pakistan:

Pakistan Telecommunication Company Limited's (PTCL) EVO wireless broadband has become Pakistan's widest broadband Internet network covering 90 percent of the nation's population in more than 180 cities and towns.

PTCL has also recently expanded coverage of its fastest Nitro Rev B network to 70 cities.

Customers can now cruise with matchless speeds of up to 9.3Mbps with EVO Nitro's Rev B in more than 70 cities.

PTCL's EVO wireless broadband is the only wireless broadband network providing Rev A and Rev B connectivity in Pakistan, giving unlimited data volume downloads in unlimited usage packages.

Its superior 3G experience comes in a variety of pre-paid and post-paid device and connectivity package options that give customers multiple bill payment and pre-paid recharge options to suit their needs.

"PTCL is leading the mobile Internet revolution in Pakistan by continuing to expand and enhance our wireless broadband services to provide seamless coverage," said PTCL Senior Executive Vice-President, Naveed Saeed


http://www.brecorder.com/it-a-computers/206/1165130/

March 13, 2012 at 5:45 PM  
Blogger Riaz Haq said...

Here's a <a href="http://www.thenewstribe.com/2012/03/13/ptcl-claims-to-hold-95-share-of-dsl-broadband-sector>report</a> on growth of broadband in Pakistan:

<i>Pakistan Telecommunication Company Limited (PTCL) claimed that it acquired 95 percent of the DSL market share with increase of 17 percent subscribers’ base in the first half of the current financial year 2011-12, the company financial report said.

According to an estimate, the company has nearly been subscribed by 1.5 million users. PTCL’s efforts in DSL business expansion were instrumental in making Pakistan one of the fastest growing countries in the world in terms of broadband growth.

The product portfolio was suitably diversified providing unparallel range from 256Kbps to 50 Mbps at competitive pricing to meet individual requirements of a wide range of customer base encompassing urban and rural communities alike.

Besides the company special promotions and bundled deals were encourages subscribers to upgrade their connections in terms of speed without any price increase.

Moreover, the introduction of Videophone with plug and play feature linking the service through regular DSL connection improved the subscriber experience.

The company also introduced FTTH (fibre to the home) in major urban areas to meet the ever-increasing demand of higher bandwidth and superior quality of services.

EVO Witnesses 30% Growth in H1FY12

In the half-year 2011-12, ‘EVO’ the wireless broadband service based on 3G technology witnessed a 30% growth in its customer base. This was made possible by introducing various products and packages encompassing latest technology.

The 3G EVO Tablet, launched on the Independence Day of 14th August 2011, is Pakistan’s first 3G enabled Android Tablet with built-in EVO wireless broadband for high speed on-the-go internet connectivity.

Similarly, economical packages were also offered on the EVO Cloud – the product enabling simultaneous 3G wireless broadband connectivity through Wi-Fi multiple devices.

Ufone Revenue up by 6%

The revenues of PTML (Ufone), the wholly owned subsidiary of PTCL also rose by 6 percent in the half year under review. The revenues of PTCL were Rs. 29 billion registering 6 percent increase.

PTCL Group earned revenues of Rs. 55 billion which were 6 percent higher compared to same period last year. The Group’s net profit after tax remained at Rs. 4.6 billion during the period under review depicting a decrease of 21 percent over corresponding period last year. PTCL’s net profit after tax was Rs. 2.9 billion which is 29 percent lower than the profit in same period last year mainly on account of decrease in Other Operating Income.</i>

http://www.thenewstribe.com/2012/03/13/ptcl-claims-to-hold-95-share-of-dsl-broadband-sector

March 13, 2012 at 6:10 PM  
Blogger Riaz Haq said...

IPTV grows by 30% in Pakistan, according to RapidTV:

Pakistan Telecommunications Company (PTCL) has registered a growth rate of 30% in customers of its internet protocol television (IPTV) service called Smart TV.

Its content acquisition strategy is reported to be behind the swift development of the IPTV service's customer care, quality of service and enriched content.

PTV dramas, including Fifty Fifty, Aangan Teraah, Aahat, and Dhoop Kinary, have now been added to PTCL Smart TV's video on demand service, as have a range of Hollywood and Bollywood films and children's entertainment.

The company says the service's greater digital picture quality, video on demand flexibility, parental lock feature, and the ability to use advanced attributes such as rewind live TV have proved popular with consumers.

PTCL says it is now striving to achieve a 9% penetration rate for its IPTV service in Pakistan, in line with the global figure for IPTV distribution in broadband homes.


http://www.rapidtvnews.com/index.php/2012031820672/pakistan-iptv-sees-30-rise-in-subscribers.html

March 18, 2012 at 8:13 AM  
Blogger Riaz Haq said...

Here's an excerpt of a Business Recorder story on Wimax in Pakistan:

Pakistan is among very few countries where various competing broadband technologies have been allowed by the regulator.

Though current broadband subscriptions are abysmally low at less than two million; PTA expects subscriptions and users to reach 19.5 million and 78 million respectively by 2020.

Future growth is expected to be driven by wireless broadband, as it can substitute fixed broadband (DSL) and offer mobile internet through dongles & wifi hotspots.

The WiMAX (Worldwide Interoperability for Microwave Access) technology is a serious contender for future broadband uptake in Pakistan because it can roll out broadband very quickly, and operators can rapidly expand their footprints if things work out with the telcos.

Globally, the highest WiMAX penetration is witnessed in Pakistan, with nearly one in three wireless broadband subscribers using WiMAX technology.

Pakistan is hosting four WiMAX operators, and all of them are competing to establish their strongholds in major metropolis....


http://www.brecorder.com/br-research/35:science-and-technology/2414:prospects-for-wimax-in-pakistan/?date=2012-04-06

April 5, 2012 at 5:31 PM  
Blogger Riaz Haq said...

Here's an Al-Arabiya report on Bannu Jail inmates with cell phones & Internet access to Facebook & blogosphere:

A high profile Pakistani prisoner, who escaped on Sunday along with 383 other inmates, was reportedly contributing to several social networking sites including Facebook and blog sites while he was in prison, a report revealed late Monday.

Adnan Rashid was on death row at Bannu Central Prison in northwestern Pakistan for his alleged attempt to assassinate former military ruler Pervez Musharraf in 2003.

But despite the high profile charges against him, Rashid enjoyed the use of cell phones inside the death cell he was held in, allowing him to keep in touch with several journalists through text messaging, the Pakistan-based Dawn news website reported.

Rashid, a former junior technician of the Pakistan Air Force, was among some 384 prisoners who escaped early Sunday from the jail after an attack by insurgents armed with guns, grenades and rockets, officials said.

The attack, claimed by Pakistan’s Taliban movement, started at around 1:00 a.m. (2000 GMT) and continued for two hours, with militants in cars and pick-up trucks shooting and lobbing grenades to force their way into the prison, a senior security official told AFP news agency.

“We have freed hundreds of our comrades in Bannu in this attack. Several of our people have reached their destinations, others are on their way,” a Taliban spokesman said on Sunday.

Rashid was arrested in early 2004 on charges of the alleged assassination attempt, but had continued to plead his innocence while in prison, claiming “that his only crime was that he had voted ‘No’ in the referendum held by the then military president Gen. Musharraf,” the Dawn reported.

As a prisoner, he was questioned by the media in interviews uploaded on to social networking site Facebook, in which he argued against flaws in laws concerning the Pakistani army, air force and navy, while urging the Supreme Court to intervene in his case and those of others who had been detained with him.

In one letter to the Chief Justice, Rashid claimed that at the time of the assassination attempt, he was on duty in Quetta and was picked up by intelligence personnel.

He had recently sent a text message to a group of recipients, who were not identified by the newspaper, which states: “There are millions of cases pending before high courts and Supreme Court, 99.9 percent of these are actually appeals against verdicts of lower courts. Billions of rupees are being spent on higher civil courts so why not this judicial system is replaced by military courts; these are swift, require no judge, no special courtrooms or bars, and most interesting court martial are unchallengeable so no more need of high and supreme courts. It saves time and money of nation. What do you think? From a court martial convict.”


http://english.alarabiya.net/articles/2012/04/17/208348.html

April 17, 2012 at 8:55 AM  
Blogger Riaz Haq said...

Here's a Nation report on PTCL's one millionth broadband subscription in Pakistan:

Prime Minister Syed Yousaf Raza Gilani has inaugurated Pakistan Telecommunication Company Limited (PTCL) celebration of achieving Pakistan’s first one million Broadband customers as part of the national commemoration of World Telecommunication & Information Society Day 2012 held here at Pak-China Friendship Center, says a press release.

“Telecommunications and IT are bringing encouraging economic dividends and inspiring lifestyle choices for the people of Pakistan,” said Prime Minister Gilani, who was the chief guest of the mega event and exhibition organised jointly by PTCL and Ministry of IT & Telecom to mark the WTIS Day 2012. This year’s theme for WTIS Day is ‘Women, Girls & ICT’.

“The role of ICTs matter immensely for gender equality and empowerment of women,” said Prime Minister Gilani. “ICTs are a force multiplier for girls’ education, enabling them to build their future on a level-playing field with their male counterparts.” The event was also addressed by Federal Minister of IT & Telecom, Raja Pervaiz Ashraf; Federal Secretary IT & Telecom, Farooq Ahmed Awan; and PTCL President & CEO, Walid Irshaid. The event was attended by senior government and PTCL officials, a large number of students, members of the civil society and media.

“Achieving one million Broadband customers mark is yet another historic milestone for PTCL,” said Irshaid in his remarks. “PTCL passionately believes in creating innovative yet affordable ICT and telecom solutions that meet the needs of all segments of Pakistan’s society, especially women. We are determined to utilise the full potential of ICTs by providing women with the telecommunication tools, products and services they need to empower them to be free and make their own decisions.”

Earlier, Prime Minister Gilani visited PTCL’s impressive pavilion exhibition set up in the main hall of the Pak-China Friendship Centre. The Prime Minister experienced first-hand telecom giant’s state-of-the-art products and services, and was briefed by PTCL’s team about their various features.

President & CEO PTCL, Walid Irshaid, also presented on the occasion special 1 million Broadband commemorative shields to Prime Minister Gilani and Minister IT & Telecom, Raja Pervaiz Ashraf.


http://www.nation.com.pk/pakistan-news-newspaper-daily-english-online/business/18-May-2012/telecom-it-bringing-economic-dividends-pm

May 21, 2012 at 9:57 AM  
Blogger Riaz Haq said...

Here's a Dawn report on fiber optic plans for Pakistan:

Minister of State for Information Technology Anusha Rehman on Thursday announced to lay optic fiber across Pakistan for spreading telecom facilities to create equal opportunities for masses.

She stated this while making a surprise visit to the fiber optic route of Chirah-Lehtrar-Kotli Sattian.

“An optic fiber cable of about 40 km has been laid and has proved to be an asset for a populace of about 101,000 people and further initiatives will be taken in future by the ministry of IT to spread optic fiber across all the union council's of the country to connect the entire nation,” she said.

So far more than 4,250 km of optic fiber cable has been laid to connect the un-served tehsil's and towns. With these achievements, USFCo and ministry of IT has created a success story for the public-private partnership entities nationally and internationally, she added.

“The ministry of IT, Telecom and USFCo stands committed to the envisioned goal of spreading innovative yet affordable ICT and telecom solutions to the masses across the country and this project has particularly played an important role in facilitation of ICT services and has generated socio-economic benefits for the locals of this area.”

Anusha during her visit to the site was accompanied by the secretary MOITT and the senior management of USFCo.


http://dawn.com/news/1059171/it-ministry-to-lay-optic-fiber-across-pakistan-anusha

November 29, 2013 at 8:30 PM  
Blogger Riaz Haq said...

Here's a PakistanToday report on PTCL's 4 Mbit broadband offering:

Pakistan Telecommunications Company Limited (PTCL) has once again added another feather to its cap. The country’s largest Information Communications Technology (ICT) services provider, has introduced 4Mbps as a minimum benchmark for broadband speeds nationwide.

Launched on Pakistan Day, in reaffirming its commitment to Pakistan, the company has taken the initiative to connect the country to the world at such high speeds, thus setting a benchmark equal to some of the advanced economies in the world and surely the highest benchmark in the South Asian region.

Walid Irshaid, President & CEO of PTCL, said, “PTCL is passionately pursuing its vision to bring broadband access to everyone, regardless of income levels and geographic terrain. Over the last few years, the expansion of PTCL broadband footprint and upgrade of existing infrastructure have all come together to change the very dynamics of information and communications technology services in Pakistan. This new initiative is a step further in ensuring that country progresses at faster speed and creates opportunities for the citizens of Pakistan to make economic gains using ICT services. And this is just the beginning of our high speed broadband initiative; there will be more to come in the future.”

PTCL being the leader in the broadband services, connects customers in more than 2,000 cities and towns across Pakistan. The company’s vast infrastructure serves as the back-bone of Pakistan’s growing telecom needs and the company continues to focus its investments in that direction to maintain the leadership in the industry. Ever since PTCL commenced broadband services in Pakistan, it has fueled a broadband revolution in the country, empowering people to come on the information communication highway and enabling every citizen and business to reach out to the world.


http://www.pakistantoday.com.pk/2014/03/24/business/ptcl-introduces-4-mbps-speed-as-minimum-benchmark-across-pakistan/

March 24, 2014 at 7:58 PM  

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