Islamabad - Speakers paid glowing tributes to Nobel Laureate Prof Dr Abdul Salam while celebrating his 89th birth anniversary here at Allama Iqbal Open University (AIOU) on Thursday.

While narrating the achievements of the great scientist, they urged the youth to follow his footprints, earning good name for the country and themselves.

Abiding commitment with research work and the spirit for working for nation were the hallmark of his personality, said Vice-Chancellor AIOU Prof Dr Shahid Siddiqui while presiding over the function. Dr Salam proved the fact that one can realise his dream by hard work and strong commitment, no matter what hurdles come in his way. He noted that Prof Salam had been making serious efforts to promote the culture of research in the country throughout his life. Pakistan, he added, enjoys rich human potential and talents to produce more scientists like Abdus Salam who had surprised the world by his hard work, knowledge and talent.

The AIOU, he said, has attached a top priority to the research work and promoting innovative ideas to further develop the country’s good image in the scientific field. Various academic programmes have been introduced as a follow-up of Dr Salam’s work.

Eminent educationist Prof Dr Ghulam Murtaza in his keynote address spoke high about the lasting qualities of head and heart of Dr Salam, who played a major role in the development of science in Pakistan in 1960s and early seventies.

As chief scientist adviser to late President Ayub Khan and Prime Minister Zulfikar Ali Bhutto he helped build the scientific infrastructure in the country.

Dr Ghulam Murtaza noted that the Dr Salam created history by becoming the first from the Muslim world to win the Nobel Prize in science. He also created history by setting up a unique institution in the International Centre for Theoretical Physics in Italy. This centre is now citadel of learning where thousands of devotees come every year to acquire knowledge of the frontiers of physics.

A documentary on the life of Dr Salam was also shown on the occasion. The function was arranged by the AIOU’s department of physics. Chairman of the department Dr Zafar Ilyas also spoke on the occasion and eulogised the contribution of Dr Salam in the field of science and technology. A cake was also cut to celebrate his birthday.