Universities have already registered their concerns with HEC regarding the internet issues that their students face in some of the far away areas. On the other hand, students have also been actively promoting their issues through protests and boycotting of online classes. HEC said that they will address all these sort of issues but advised universities to continue the online classes. At present, Federal Minister of Education has now raised this issue by passing a statement which stated that students face internet and connectivity issues which is hampering the online learning process.
Internet, these days is as essential as any other thing and within these times of health crisis, internet is closer to education than ever before. Federal Minister highlighted the importance of internet within education sector. He conducted a meeting in similar perspective with officials from Pakistan Telecommunication Authority (PTA), Ministry of Information Technology, Universal Service Fund (USF), Higher Education Commission (HEC) and Ministry of Education. The issues which were discussed included internet connectivity, excessive load-shedding, internet availability and signals etc. within the rural and urban areas as well. Major areas facing issues, such as, Azad Jammu and Kashmir, Gilgit Baltistan and Balochistan were discussed in detail.
The meeting had participation from all the major stakeholders and meeting concluded on a mutual consensus by all the parties. A mutual consensus was developed in the face of solving all such issues as discussed above. Representatives from PTA, USF and IT Ministry proposed some of the possible solutions too but they will be implemented once approved. Similar to this, HEC is also in continuous discussion with major telecom companies of Pakistan for providing internet services on affordable rates with student packages but no breaking news has come out of that yet.