Pakistan is entering into a new era of prosperity. The country has internet access in almost all cities. There are computer labs in schools and colleges, every other day you would see some government officer inaugrating a new computer lab in some school or college. Musharraf’s government is proud that they have made so many TV channels available to Pakistanis. All medium to large size companies, institutions and organizations have some www address printed on their business cards, posters and advertisements.
But I feel that we as a nation are absolutely clueless about what information is and how important role it plays in the development of nations. We know that our organizations, businesses or institutes need a www.myorganization.com.pk website. But we have no idea how to use the world wide web. We have fruits in our hands but we don’t know that in order to enjoy their juices we need to bite them. In 2006 Pakistanis can not download your utility bills. Even after yeas of hard work to bring these small but significant changes to lives of Pakistanis, we failed.
Karachi Electric Supply Corporation (KESC), is a Pakistani company with a www.kesc.com.pk domain name. KESC supplies electricity to more than 14 Million residents, businesses and industries in the Megapolis and surrounding areas. This giant corporation’s website has only three links on their main page. Rest of the page is an screenshot of a website and is displayed in Gif image format. I remember KESC had a functional website sometime ago and I have downloaded my electricity bill from their website. I remember they had detailed information available. Now every thing is gone.
The Website has a picture telling visitors that KESC has 92 customer services centers, but no addresses, telephone numbers or email addresses available. A picture titled “Latest News” tells you about Federal Minister Mr. Liaquat Jatoi’s visit to KESC headquarters on 29 September 2006, nothing more on that is available.
I don’t know how many Bills KESC issues each month, but this URL is printed on the back of each KESC bill. I don’t know how many people make an attempt to look at the KESC website each day or month. But I find it quite suprising that they are so careless about all this.
The website (a poster actually) doesn’t disclose any contact information so I was unable to contact people who are responsible for this job at KESC. It has a link at the bottom telling that the website designed and maintained by e-Creatorz. I filled out the contact form on the e-creatorz website on January 19 and asked them about the situation. They didn’t disclose or clarify anything, simple told me to wait till the website is relaunched hopefully in a few days. Now after a month, www.KESC.com.pk still displays the flyer that you can get created by the graphic designers at Burns Road for RS.100. I don’t blame e-Creatorz for getting more money than they deserved. I blame KESC for being so cruel, barbaric and ignorant.
KESC and all Pakistanis who can not understand the importance of information, the broken websites, useless and contentless macromedia flashy websites, and the 30 minutes per week per student computer labs. These are the signs that Pakistan is not entering into any new era of prosperity. We are actually going back in the reverse gear. Yes we are making progress and working hard but in the wrong and totally opposite direction than the one that leads to knowledge, power and freedom.