FAISALABAD-Experts stressed a need for producing skilled manpower in space sciences so as to benefit the mankind and to compete with the world.

University of Agriculture Faisalabad (UAF) Vice Chancellor Dr Zafar Iqbal Randhawa chaired space week celebrations on Monday themed “Exploring New Worlds in Space”. It was arranged by the UAF in collaboration with Pakistan Space and Upper Atmosphere Research Commission (SUPARCO). It featured different programs including water rocket competition, an awareness walk, and a central function at the Iqbal Auditorium in which school students from 20 schools across the district participated. UN-declared World Space Week 2018 was themed at “Space Unites the World”.

The VC said: “We have to compete with the developed countries in different fields including Precision Agriculture, Information Technology, Global Positioning System (GPS), Geographic Information System (GIS), and Modern Disaster Management System.” He added that Pakistan’s dependence on space applications and information was boosting up to catch the speed of the technology and science advancement. “The satellites are used to identifying, and forecasting the natural disaster,” he said, adding “Due to satellite, now we can identify rainfall, its impact on human as well as on agriculture and we can take precautionary measures.”

He said that the nations had proved their mettle on economic and defence grounds due the technological and scientific advancement. He said that Muslim world was lagging behind in the modern technological uplift. “Now, we have to put special measurers for the promotion of scientific knowledge.” He urged the participants to get the knowledge of space in order to explore the universe Allah had blessed with tremendous resources.

He said that on December 6, 1999, the United Nations General Assembly declared World Space Week as an annual event from October 4 to 10. The dates based on recognition of two important events in space history: the launch of the first human-made Earth satellite on October 4, 1957, and the signing of the Outer Space Treaty on October 10, 1967. World Space Week is an international celebration of science and technology, and their contribution to the betterment of the human condition.

SUPARCO Agri Information Director Dr Ijaz Ahmad Bhutta said that in fact no other technology and scientific breakthrough more benefit to everyday lives than the space technology. He said that entire communication of the world was depended on the satellite system, adding “We are now able to watch TV, internet etc.” He said that technology brought a lot of benefit to the modern world. “Since the era of space age, the space technology has brought more benefit to the mankind than any technological advancement in the world.” He said that such activities Space Week was providing a platform to the students to give voice to their innovative idea and to refurbish their God- given qualities. He said that the Supaco was taking all possible steps to explore the universe and get the benefit from it for the humanity. He said that they were running many researches relating to space. He said that World Space Week would provide unique leverage in space outreach and education; educate people around the world about the benefits that they receive from space. It would encourage greater use of space for sustainable economic development.

Director ORIC Dr Zahir Ahmad Zahir said that said that country needed to prepare skilled manpower in the space sciences to face up to the modern world. The world has become the global village because of technological advancement, he said, adding that it was the result of satellites and knowledge of space sciences.

Principal Officer Laboratory School System Dr Haq Nawaz Bhatti said the celebrations would encourage students about science, technology and engineering and to foster cooperation in space sciences.