The Government of Pakistan launched the Prime Minister’s Youth Program in 2013, which encompasses various initiatives designed to empower the country’s young population. One notable component of this program is the Prime Minister’s Laptop Scheme, now in its fourth and fifth phases. Its primary objective is to enhance research capabilities, foster high-quality education, and improve access to information technology for talented students nationwide. By providing laptops to students at the onset of their academic journey, the scheme aims to revolutionize the education and research landscape in the country.
Acknowledging the importance of investing in the youth as a strategic long-term endeavor for national development, the government introduced the Prime Minister’s Laptop Scheme. This initiative strives to empower students by equipping them with laptops to support their academic and research endeavors. In addition to the laptops themselves, the scheme includes a comprehensive ecosystem that provides licensed software, training opportunities, certification vouchers, 3G EVO devices, and access to the national digital library and online courses from renowned universities. This holistic approach not only enhances the educational experience for students but also fosters collaboration with relevant industries, enabling Pakistani higher education institutions to align with international standards.
Distribution and Application Process:
The Higher Education Commission (HEC) of Pakistan oversees the laptop distribution scheme, managing the procurement and allocation process. To participate, interested students can easily apply online through the Students’ Service Portal.
The application procedure entails registering or updating the student’s profile on the portal. Should any difficulties arise during the application process or in receiving SMS notifications, students can reach out to firstname.lastname@example.org to lodge their complaints.
- The selection process commences with the submission of online applications by eligible students.
- The relevant focal person at the student’s university then verifies the provided information, such as name, CNIC, department, degree level, and academic performance.
- The university’s focal person bears full responsibility for the verification process.
- If any inconsistencies are detected, the student’s data is rectified by obtaining the necessary information from either the university or the student.
- Upon completion of the verification process, each university receives its designated share of laptops, based on predetermined criteria.
Merit Lists and Distribution Criteria:
The criteria for laptop distribution are outlined as follows:
- Provincial Distribution: Laptops are distributed based on the enrollment share of each province. The distribution is proportionate to the overall student enrollment in higher education institutes, with certain categories excluded.
- Full Coverage for Higher Programs: Students enrolled in PhD, MPhil, MS, or equivalent programs are eligible for full coverage and are ensured to receive laptops.
- Quotas for Specific Categories: Quotas are allocated for students who fall under certain categories, including distant learners, students from government polytechnic institutes or government colleges of technology, as well as students from the federal capital and federally administered tribal areas.
- Remaining Allocation: The remaining laptops are allocated to students enrolled in bachelor’s and master’s (16-year) programs. This allocation includes students on waiting lists from previous distributions and those who have been newly admitted between July 2014 and June 2015.
Merit lists for laptop distribution are generated based on the inter se merit among eligible students at each distribution level. These merit lists are publicly available on the HEC website. Additionally, students can check their individual status by visiting http://pmnls.hec.gov.pk/student_details.php.
ICT and GCT Colleges Distribution Criteria:
In the case of colleges operating under Islamabad Capital Territory (ICT) and Government Technical Colleges (GCTs) across Pakistan and Azad Jammu & Kashmir (AJ&K), laptops are awarded based on merit. The most recent academic performance in examinations conducted by the relevant board is taken into account for generating the merit list. The distribution is divided among colleges based on the number of applicants rather than enrollment figures.
The Prime Minister’s Laptop Scheme has emerged as a transformative initiative, empowering Pakistani students by granting them access to technology and education. The scheme aims to bridge the digital divide and foster a technologically enabled academic environment by providing laptops, licensed software, training opportunities, and other essential resources.
Through this program, the government showcases its dedication to investing in the youth and acknowledges their potential as a driving force for the prosperous future of the country.