Pakistan: QAU Physics Center renamed after Ahmadiyya Nobel laureate Dr Abdus Salam

 

Salam shared the 1979 Nobel Prize in Physics for his contribution in the field of physics and become the first Pakistani to receive a Nobel Prize in science and the second from an Islamic country.

ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif on Monday honoured Pakistan’s only Nobel laureate scientist Dr Abdus Salam by renaming the Physics department of a leading university after him, risking a backlash from fundamentalists who consider the physicist a heretic.

“Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif has been pleased to give in principle approval for the renaming of National Centre for Physics at Quaid-i-Azam University (Islamabad) as ‘Professor Abdus Salam Center for Physics'”, according to a statement.

It said Sharif has directed Ministry of Federal Education and Professional to put up formal summary for renaming of the center for approval of the President of Pakistan.

The PM has also been pleased to approve the grant of five (5) fellowships annually to Pakistani students for PhD in the field of Physics through Higher Education Commission in reputed international universities.

“The fellowship programme is named as Professor Abdus Salam Fellowship,” according to his office.

Sharif has taken this decision in recognition of the “great contributions of renowned Pakistani physicist Dr Mohammad Abdus Salam” who is a major figure in the 20th century theoretical physics.

Salam shared the 1979 Nobel Prize in Physics for his contribution in the field of physics and become the first Pakistani to receive a Nobel Prize in science and the second from an Islamic country.

“His remarkable achievement earned fame and prestige for the country which rightly deserves to be valued,” PMO said.

Unfortunately, the recognition came late as by the time Dr Salam was honoured by the Nobel committee, Ahmadis were declared non-Muslims as part of Islamisation in 1974.

In 1984, they were banned from calling themselves Muslim. They are banned from preaching and even from travelling to Saudi Arabia for pilgrimage. Their publications are prohibited. Ahmadi mosques have been shut down.

Ahmedis were prosecuted by the fundamentalists and contribution of eminent people like Dr Salam was ignored.

Sharif’s decision may pitch him against the extremists who are still active to regularly attack the Ahmadiyya people.

In May 2010, suicide bombers killed 80 people at two mosques during Friday prayers.

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