Interview with Dr. S. Khusro Iqbal — a seasoned professional
PAGE: Tell our readers about yourself, please:
Dr. S. Khusro Iqbal: Instead of responding verbally to your response I will refer to the my most recent photograph in which I am receiving the ‘Professional Pride of Performance Award’ from the Hon’ble President of Islamic Republic of Pakistan, Dr. Arif Alvi, after a rigorous and diligent scrutiny of the panel constituted by the industry & business professionals for this purpose. Concluding, among the industry & community, I am referred as a dynamic human resources, labor and corporate law specialist with years of successful professional experience in my field of competence. My skills of executing research, analyzing data, court appearance in order to drive fruitful court wins, proven track record of excellent work ethic, unparalleled attention to detail, and knack for executing high-performing legal successful victories always allow me to contribute to my team’s success. I have successfully managed the roles of C-Level positions while performing variety of executive functions and organizing senior managerial activities, and thus have helped to improve procedures in my company activities. I have globally rehabilitated and successfully transformed many in-loss and sick establishments into fast-paced organization where excellent development of high quality business strategies and plans got utilized in alignment with the organizational objectives by employing my exceptional leadership and motivational skills to help other team members to advance in the work efficiency and achieve set business goals.
PAGE: What is your take on the socio-economic development in Pakistan?
Dr. S. Khusro Iqbal: To be honest, I feel that Pakistan’s poor performance in education, social development, and family planning are expected to inhibit future socio-economic development. In a recently published UNESCO report on South Asia’s Educational and Scientific growth while discussing Pakistan’s socio-economic development they identified that only 22% of Pakistanis are literate, reflecting the low social value placed on education. The report further says that Pakistan’s gross domestic product (GDP) has grown at an average of 5.3% per year since 1950 and real per capita income has increased 3.7% per year over the past decade, however increased per capita income is compromised by the increase of 7.5% annual population growth rate which is because of psychological and economic need for children, women’s limited roles, some religious beliefs opposing to family planning, and inefficient government delivery of social services. Due to these trends, the Pakistan economy is structurally weak as there have been rapid increases in both the domestic and foreign debt. Urbanization is increasing economic inequality in the society, and government taxation policies are inefficient to collect national tax from non-tax payers; big agriculturist and industry. Consequently, within a few years’ time all these trends will magnify the structural weaknesses of Pakistan’s future socio-economic development.
PAGE: How would you describe the human resources development in our country?
Dr. S. Khusro Iqbal: Human resource development (HRD) is an ever-changing field in Pakistan. The concepts and the underlying principles of HRD may be similar throughout the globe, but its practice differs in Pakistan due to contextual factors such as culture, technology, resources and national policies. Nevertheless, there is an important role of HRD for the social and economic development of Pakistan as being a developing country and by its developing dynamics is a totally different as compared to the countries that are developed such as the Australia, China, France, Germany, USA and UK so there are different challenges for Pakistan and if I specifically talk about Pakistan`s challenges then we can see that here economy has now become more services-oriented, which is a complete change. Now with the majority of workforce related to the services sector meaning the need and the importance of human resources development department has significantly increased and in order to meet the demand, there should be a defined system for the organization to adopt.
It is also important to worth mentioning that it is not an easy decision for any organization to fully implement the human resource development system as it requires a significant amount of resources and finances, which is difficult for low tier organizations or small organization to afford. So what should a small organization do? There are several ways of human resource development implementation; meaning, it depends on the organization as which way it adopts, if the organization is not able to afford the system development cost then there is an option of the external service provider or a third party outsourcing. By choosing this option, the cost would be significantly reduced as human resource development main purpose is to provide employees with learning and development opportunities and it is not necessary that it can only be provided by the company but the source can be anyone especially when there is a growing trend of training specialists and consulting firms or even online learning service providers and they are quite professional in their work.
PAGE: Could you dilate on the challenges being confronted by the populace of Pakistan?
Dr. S. Khusro Iqbal: Ever since, Pakistan came into being the population have been facing a number of challenges in the shape of poverty, unemployment, crime, terrorism, injustice, child marriage, honor killings; inheritance to women, domestic violence, heinous sex assaults and or rapes, gender inequality at work; inefficient justice system; poor health & education system; religious intolerance; political moral & financial corruption; undocumented national economy and much more.
Recently, the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) and United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) has suggested guidance to federal government in planning, implementing, monitoring after evaluating various challenges faced by Pakistan in their various reports to meet the MDGs (Millennium Development Goals). The report reiterates that Pakistani society is facing many Social, economic, religious, justice to public, and educational issues like; poor prosecution against criminals; delayed legal proceedings; primitive laws; inadequate legislation; conflict of interest among legislators; unemployment; caste system; poverty; child labor; illiteracy; gender inequality at work; narcoticsm in handling; sanitation; clean water, poor hygiene; drugs abuse; religious conflicts due to intolerance and uncontrolled influence of clerics over general masses; juvenile crime rate; unemployment; high cost of living; unprecedented currency devaluation; shocking inflation rate; illegal hoarding of daily use items; undocumented economy; political, moral & financial corruption; mafia dominance in business, taxation and monetary policies control; poor governance in national institutions; poor health & education system; lawlessness etc. The report further says that Pakistan has to deal with these issues otherwise it will be difficult to sustain in this fast moving world where everything has proper policies and rights which are effectively.
PAGE: Your comments about the future of our country?
Dr. S. Khusro Iqbal: This is a simple question with a very complicated answer. As someone who grew up at the heart of Karachi’s middle class, I feel inclined to give a grounded view of the reality of everyday in addition to talking about the national politics and prospects of weak economy. If we honestly analyze the discussion followed in print and electronic media on our national issues related to judicial and policing system; legislation; literacy rate; population planning; former and technical education; health; institutional governance; protection to black money and power hunger under the self-coined definition of democracy; poor rule of law; utility services; pharmaceuticals; textile; money laundering; exports and imports; business investment and growth etc, then the future of Pakistan seems to be one of the greatest challenges. It is a country of 179 million people, projected to grow to between 250 and 335 million by 2050, which would make it the fourth or fifth largest country in the world. Clearly, it is split by internal economic, political, religious and demographic differences and external worries. To conclude the future of Pakistan is the seeds we sow today. The future of Pakistan can be bright, like the blinding sun; bubbling like a volcano gearing to erupt if we can bounce back with our youthful new generation with their merit based, high character, ethical upbringing to paint a picture of a prosperous nation. As it is rightly said, that broken cities don’t create broken people but people with unimaginable strength. With around 63% of us being under 25 years of age, I see a future full of struggle and success for my country. Good people make a nation great and I see the good in the hearts of our common man.