LAHORE: Punjab University has turned 139 years old on Thursday. It was established on 14 October 1882, the first Chancellor of the Punjab University was Sir Charles Umpherston and the first Vice Chancellor was Sir James Broadwood Lyall. Punjab University has produced three Nobel Laureates, Prof. Har Gobind Khorana was awarded Nobel Prize in Physiology / Medicine in 1968, Prof Abdul Salam was awarded Nobel Prize in Physics in 1979 and Prof Subramanian Chandrasekhar was also awarded Nobel Prize in Physics in 1983. PU consists of five campuses included Old Campus (Allama Iqbal Campus), New Campus (Quaid-e-Azam Campus), Khanspur Campus, Gujranwala Campus and Jhelum Campus. The current Chancellor of PU is Ch. Muhammad Sarwar and the Vice Chancellor is Prof Niaz Ahmad Akhtar.
In 2018, when incumbent VC Prof Niaz Ahmad took charge of Punjab University, the varsity had 13 faculties, 10 constituent colleges, 73 departments / centers / institutes which were not adequate for the present educational needs. The VC keeping in view the needs of the country for the next fifty years, started work to adapt the structure of all faculties and departments to the modern educational and research needs, as a result of which 19 faculties have been established in PU today. There are more than 135 departments and centers.
Prof Niaz Ahmad has taken several steps to increase the university’s global ranking and promote research culture. As a result, in the last three years PU”s international ranking had improved by 16 percent. First time in the history of Punjab University the 13 subjects had been ranked internationally and PU’s Chemical and Petroleum Engineering Department had been ranked among top 100-150 institutions in the world by the QS. PU has also improved its Asian ranking and it stands on 178th position, making a considerable jump of 54 points in just two years. The Nature Publishing Group, a world-class publisher of high impact scientific and medical information in print and online founded in 1869, has also ranked Punjab University No 1 in terms of research publications in the field of natural sciences amongst all Pakistani universities. On this occasion Prof VC Prof Saleem Mazhar, Registrar Dr Muhammad Khalid Khan, Faculty members and employees congratulated the VC and lauded his efforts for achieving these milestones at international level. In his message, Prof Niaz Ahmad advised the faculty, students and research scholars to focus on applied research to meet the challenges faced by the country and nation.