Scientist of the year -2012 was announced by the International Cotton Advisory Committee (ICAC)
Dr Yusuf Zafar, who is the director general of agriculture and biotechnology division at the Pakistan Atomic Energy Commission and member, Public Research and Regulation Initiative was declared ‘Scientist of the Year-2012’ for his …
Dr Yusuf Zafar, who is the director general of agriculture and biotechnology division at the Pakistan Atomic Energy Commission and member, Public Research and Regulation Initiative was declared ‘Scientist of the Year-2012’ for his pioneering work in the cotton biotechnology sector. Pakistan is growing more than 2.6 Millions of Hectares of genetically modified cotton.
Zafar has over 110 scientific papers (published in national and international journals) to his name. According to ICAC, “in cotton virology his group covers nearly 90 per cent of the global published literature.”
The Faisalabad-based scientist played a key role in bringing together the world’s major cotton groups, including Australia, China, UK and USA, for the purpose of conducting joint research.
Heading the National Institute of Biotechnology and Genetic Engineering in Faisalabad, Zafar and his team have contributed helped produce nearly 100 M. Phil and 30 Ph. D students, focusing on various aspects of research and development in cotton. He has, meanwhile, remained in the front line to establish Biosafety Protocols, Plant Breeder Rights, Intellectual Property Rights/Patents and ISO certification in Pakistan.
In 2001, the Pakistan Atomic Energy Commission awarded him Best Scientist of the Year Award. The President of Pakistan awarded him ‘Tamgha-e-Imtiaz (Medal of Distinction) in 2004, the highest recognition for a researcher.
In other honors, Zafar has also won the Rockefeller Foundation and UNESCO Research Awards on Agri-Biotechnology, and is member of the USDA Cochran Fellow on Agriculture Biotechnology.
Apart from leading the Faisalabad institute, he is on the Board of Governors of the International Centre for Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology-ICGEB (Italy), FAO country focal person on agriculture biotechnology and member of the Cotton Policy Committee of the government.
The ‘Scientist of the year -2012’ award was announced by ICAC late Wednesday. ICAC is an intergovernmental body with 54 members and provides services to Common Funds for Commodity (CFC), an organization of UNCTAD-UN family.
Applications for the award are invited each year by the Washington DC-based institute and the selection committee comprises five anonymous judges outside the ICAC Secretariat.