LAHORE - Call it a paradigm shift or evolution in the history of the largest province, it has begun to transform the typical government working into modern age solutions at par with international standards.

The tallest building – Arfa Software Technology Park – has been established as a hub of training and promotion for Information Technology in the insurgency-infested and poverty-stricken country while the working of the provincial government departments like traffic, police, health, education, and Lahore High Court (LHC) would be monitored through the multi-storey complex.

The Chief Minister’s vigilance cell, established in the technology park, will actively monitor the working of the officials in police stations, hospitals, educational boards, city roads and courts. “Each report will be sent to the CM directly and instantly. This initiative will not only detect shortfalls in the governance but also help government keep a strong check on the performance of the departments, which deal with the public at large,” Dr Umar Saif, Chairman Punjab Information Technology Board (PITB) told TheNation in an exclusive chat on Wednesday.

Believe it or not, once the project begins formal working, you will be caught on camera for violating a traffic signal in Lahore while the Chief Minister’s Cell would react immediately if they found an accused being tortured in police lock-ups even in remote districts like Mandi Bahauddin or Bahawalpur.

Dr Umar Saif, a highly-educated professional and energetic officer who supervises the affairs of the IT Tower, believed that the 17-storey project, almost completed with an estimated cost of Rs 2 billion, would add a new chapter in the history of the province as far as promotion of information technology is concerned. The government has rented out 85 percent of the space to world-recognised companies in order to fetch investment in IT sector and to make the center as a profitable project. We are also establishing a state-of-the-art IT University in the complex as per the vision of the Chief Minister. “Apart from education and training, the students at this IT University would be provided multiple career-oriented opportunities,” said Umar Saif.

According to him, the government was jointly working with Microsoft for setting up e-government and promotion of information technology and cooperation was also being sought from other companies for the promotion of IT in the province.