NUST honours Prof Atta-ur-Rahman - Pakistan Today

NUST honours Prof Atta-ur-Rahman

National University of Science and Technology (NUST) have named one of its research centres after the prominent scientist Professor Dr Atta-ur-Rahman. The centre has been named as “Atta-ur-Rahman School of Applied Biosciences” which was earlier called NUST Centre for Virology and Immunology (NCVI). The NUST decision to rename its centre is to acknowledge Professor Rehman’s services and contributions for promotion of science and technology and strengthening research base in Pakistan.
The renaming ceremony was held at NUST Campus here today with Dr Atta-ur-Rahman being the chief guest and Rector NUST, Engineer Muhammad Asghar in the chair. The event was graced by a large number of academic scientists. Earlier in October last year, the Mara University of Technology in Malaysia, also announced to establish a large research centre in the field of Natural Product Chemistry named after Dr Atta-ur-Rahman. Pakistan’s Karachi University also named one of its research centres after him, in recognition of his services to chemistry.
Professor Atta-ur-Rahman has, to his credit, more than 850 publications in organic chemistry including 663 research publications, 103 books, 18 patents and 65 chapters in research books published in major US and European presses. Addressing the science community at the occasion, Prof Atta said, “Pakistan can make rapid progress through development of science, technology and education and for that government must carry on the momentum which was accelerated in 2002.”
“Imposing cuts on science, technology and education funding will push Pakistan back into dark ages and shall waste the billions we have spent so far for advancement in higher education, science, technology and research,” he further added.
Dr Atta-ur-Rahman is the first scientist from the Muslim world to have won the prestigious UNESCO Science Prize. He was elected as Fellow of Royal Society (London) in July 2006 thereby becoming the one of the four scientists from the Muslim world to have ever won this honour conferred by the prestigious 350 year old scientific society. World’s top universities, including Cambridge University, Coventry University and Bradford University, have conferred honorary doctorate degrees on him. Besides, he has won world’s top international prizes, like UNESCO Science-Prize, for his research contributions.
Different governments of Pakistan have also conferred four civil awards on him including Tamgha-i-Imtiaz in 1983, Sitara-i-Imtiaz in 1991, Hilal-i-Imtiaz in 1998, and the highest national civil award Nishan-i-Imtiaz in 2002. The Austrian government conferred its high civil award(Grosse Goldene Ehrenzeischen am Bande) on him” in 2007 for bringing about revolutionary changes in higher education in Pakistan. Newly named Atta-ur-Rahman School of Applied Biosciences was established in 2007 at NUST, to provide excellent research facilities in the field of virology and immunology in Pakistan. Professor Atta facilitated execution of this project when he was Chairman of the Higher Education Commission. The centre is being renamed and restructured as well to follow international trends and standards.