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Bill Gates says he will visit Pakistan

July 15, 2005. The News

By Sami Abrahim




SEATTLE: Bill Gates, the Chief Executive of Microsoft, has shown willingness to visit Pakistan when an invitation was extended by the world’s youngest MCP (Microsoft certified professional) Arfa Karim, 10, here on Tuesday.

The 10-year-old Pakistani, Arfa, is currently in the United States to visit the Microsoft Headquarters which is being sponsored by the cyber giant in recognition of her achievements in computer literacy at such a young age.

Mir Khalil-ur-Rahman Foundation was the first to acknowledge Arfa’s talent and recently presented her with the ‘Shabash Award’.

Arfa, who spent 10 minutes with Gates in his office, told The News: "I am very glad that I met with Bill Gates. He is a great guy; very simple, very friendly and very humble." She also read out a poem to Gates. Arfa said when she extended the invitation to Gates to visit Pakistan, he said he will come to Pakistan in the near future.

Arfa even asked him to stay at her residence rather than becoming a state guest and he was quoted as saying as "Oh, it would definitely be fun".

Somasegar, the vice president of Microsoft developers, who was also present in the meeting, told The News that it was a good meeting and Arfa was very confident all that time and she even asked all kinds of questions during that brief time without any hesitation. She asked Bill Gates why kids are not allowed to join Microsoft and Gates said "we do offer internships to high school students but we want kids to concentrate on their studies first".

Arfa told The News that she asked Gates why we don’t see more women in Microsoft and he replied because it was hard to find women who were interested in technology.

Gates asked questions about culture, Pakistani lifestyle and about religion. He also asked at what age Muslim women start wearing the "Hijab". Earlier, Arfa, accompanied by her father Amjid Karim, an army officer currently serving in Congo under the United Nations, and Jawwad Rehman, the country head of Microsoft for Pakistan, paid visits to a number of Microsoft facilities.


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