If all goes well and visa formalities are completed in time, then it is going to be a journey down the memory lane for a delegation from Punjab Agricultural University (PAU) who are all set to visit the University of Agriculture in Faisalabad, Pakistan.
After the Partition in 1947, the Faisalabad (Lyallpur) varsity was set up after getting detached from PAU. Leading the 15-member PAU delegation will be Dr G S Kalkat, Chairman, Punjab State Farmers’ Commission and an alumnus of the Faisalabad varsity.
A 1947-batch passout of BSc (Agriculture), Kalkat said, “They have invited us for an alumni meet and a symposium on ‘Challenges in Agriculture’. I am hoping to meet a classmate, Mushtaq Ahmad, during the meet.”
The delegation is expected to leave on April 24 and attend the meet and symposium on April 25 and 26. In 2012 and 2013, a delegation from the Faisalabad varsity led by Vice-Chancellor Dr Iqrar Ahmad had visited PAU, but this year the meet was cancelled due to issues in visa clearance.
During Indo-Pak negotiations in recent years, it was also proposed that a scientists’ home be established on both sides of the Wagah border to ease exchange of information and arrange regular meetings for scientists of both nations, but the project is yet to get pace.
PAU Vice-Chancellor Dr B S Dhillon told Newsline, “We are excited to go there. The Pak varsity scientists have attended our alumni meet many times, but our visit will be after a gap of almost nine years.”
Along with Kalkar, another alumnus, Dr S S Bains, former Director (Agriculture), Punjab, will be attending the meet.
H S Dhaliwal, Dean, College of Agriculture, PAU, who is organising the visit, however, said, “There are only three days to go and visa formalities are yet to be completed. Anything can happen at the last moment. It would be a unique experience for scientists to visit the Faisalabad varsity from which our PAU was born during Partition. We are also hoping for positive exchange of information on agricultural research.”