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Great scientist Salam's death anniversary observed

November 21, 2011

For more than forty years he has been a prolific researcher in theoretical elementary particle physics. - Photo by AFP

ISLAMABAD: Renowned Pakistani scientist and first Nobel prize holder Dr Abdus Salam is being remembered on his death anniversary on Monday.

Dr Abdus Salam was born in Jhang, a small town of Pakistan in 1926.

In 1950 he received the Smith's Prize from Cambridge University for the most outstanding pre-doctoral contribution to physics.

He also obtained a PhD in theoretical physics at Cambridge; his thesis, published in 1951, contained fundamental work in quantum electrodynamics.

Salam returned to Pakistan in 1951 to teach mathematics at Government College, Lahore.

He became head of the Mathematics Department of the Punjab University in 1952.

To pursue a career of research in theoretical physics he worked abroad.

At the ICTP, Trieste, which he created, he instituted the famous “Associateships”.

In 1954, Salam left his native country for a lectureship at Cambridge, and since then has visited Pakistan as adviser on science policy.

He was a member of the Pakistan Atomic Energy Commission, a member of the Scientific Commission of Pakistan and was Chief Scientific Adviser to the President from 1961 to 1974.

Since 1957 he has been Professor of Theoretical Physics at Imperial College, London, and since 1964 has combined this position with that of Director of the ICTP, Trieste.

For more than forty years he has been a prolific researcher in theoretical elementary particle physics.

He has served on a number of United Nations committees concerned with the advancement of science and technology in developing countries.

The money he received from the Atoms for Peace Medal and Award he spent on setting up a fund for young Pakistani physicists to visit the ICTP.

He uses his share of the Nobel Prize entirely for the benefit of physicists from developing countries.

Salam died on 21st November 1996 at the age of 70 in Oxford, England after a long illness.